Supreme Court has acted hastily in upholding the ‘clean Chit to Modi.’ of the Supreme Court of Gujarat

By Sushil Kutty

Now there is another reason why the Muslim minority will not trust the Supreme Court of India. Earlier there was Afzal Guru, as quoted by Afreen Javed, Prayagraj rioting the daughter of King Mohammed Javed. On June 23, the highest court should have thought twice before upholding the “clean chit” given to Prime Minister Narendra Modi by the Gujarat Supreme Court in the “greater conspiracy” case filed against him by Zakia Jafri whose husband Ehsan Jafri met a brutal end in the 2002 Gujarat riots.

At the time, the refrain was that the Gujarat riots were the “action-reaction” to Godhra. Ehsan Jafri, then a member of Congress, was dragged from his home in the Gulberg Society in Ahmedabad on February 28, 2002, and massacred by a frenzied mob. Since then, Ehsan’s wife Zakia Jafri has waged a lonely, and now losing, fight for justice for her husband and 68 others who died in the Gulberg Society.

Gujarat 2002 left more than 2,000 dead, the overwhelming number of them Muslims. Then Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee noted how Gujarat was left at the mercy of marauding crowds armed with tridents and swords, their bloodcurdling cries of war paralyzing the victims where they stood.

Vajpayee spoke with Chief Minister Narendra Modi at his side about “Raj Dharma” and how it appeared to be lacking among those who ruled Gujarat in 2002, a clear indictment of Modi and his government. Modi survived to rewrite history, though he went through the fire, being hoisted for a SIT and going through hours of whimsical questions, always escaping with a clean chit, as he did in the “greater conspiracy” behind Ehsan Jafri’s murder case.

The original ‘clean chit’ was given by the SIT who investigated the murders and confirmed by the Gujarat High Court. On Friday, June 23, the Supreme Court upheld the clean slate. In terms that Zakia Jafri found shocking, the Supreme Court said: “We do not approve the filing of the Appellant (Zakia Jafri) alleging violation of the rule of law with regard to investigation and the approach of the Magistrate and the Supreme Court in handling of the final report”.

Zakia Jafri’s appeal was deemed “undeserved” and deserved to be rejected. The SIT had found no “prosecutable evidence”. Also, Petitioner No 2 Teesta Setalvad had “establishments” and wanted to “keep the (Gujarat riots) pot boiling”.

For Prime Minister Narendra Modi, June 23 would be counted among the days of contentment. It also marks Modi as someone who has endured a plethora of allegations and walked away with clean chips. This, when there are those who think Modi should have gotten a pink slip instead of the clean chit.

For Modi, Gujarat 2002 is best left to the past, forgotten! It made him a pariah in the eyes of billions of people, and the media wouldn’t leave him alone if bloodsucking leeches stood behind his footsteps. Internationally, country after country refused him entry into their jurisdictions. Modi’s Islam phobia was highlighted around the world.

That all changed on May 26, 2014 when he took the oath of Prime Minister of India and was granted visas to all those countries that declared him persona non grata. Eight years later, Modi has proclaimed himself ‘Vishwaguru’ and has received praise from world leaders, including British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who said at COP26: “Narendra Modi actually produces based on its ‘One Sun One Grid One World'” -promise.

The last ‘clean chit’ to Modi comes on Modi’s eve on his way to the G7 summit in Germany, and then to the UAE, one of several Muslim countries that had held India accountable for allegedly blasphemous comments about the Prophet Muhammad by BJP spokesmen. Imagine how the G7 and UAE would have reacted if the Supreme Court had ruled against Modi. Certainly, parts of the national media would have roasted Modi and he would have flown to Germany with more questions following him, waiting for him in Germany and in the UAE.

And the world would once again have been forced to reminisce about 2002 Gujarat and whether there was truth in the “great conspiracy” behind the riots. The BJP would have lost quite a bit of steam and accusing politicians of other parties of wrongdoing would not be easy. Congress in particular would have reason to feel justified.

Modi has, since Gujarat 2002, and since he became prime minister in 2014, tried his best to refurbish and acquire for himself the secular “sabka saath, sabka vishwas vishwaguru” image. It derailed when Nupur let go of Sharma with alleged profanity. Modi wants to forget 2002, and he remembers “friend Abbas” from his childhood, but Gujarat 2002 relentlessly pursues him, anyway the latest Supreme Court blunder. (IPA service)

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