Naroda Case: Kodnani, Bajrangi Get Life Term #Justice


Naroda Case: Kodnani, Bajrangi Get Life Term

Naroda Patiya: Maya Kodnani gets 28 years, Babu Bajrangi jail till death

PTI | AhmedabadAug 31, 2012

 

A Special Court today awarded life imprisonment to BJP MLA Maya Kodnani, Bajrang Dal leader Babu Bajrangi and 29 other convicts for the 2002 riots here at Naroda Patiya where 97 people were brutally killed.

The Court named Kodnani, a sitting MLA and former Gujarat Minister, as “a kingpin of riots” in Naroda area and sentenced her to 18-year life imprisonment after serving 10 years jail term under IPC Section 326 (voluntary causing grievous hurt by dangerous weapons or means).

Bajrangi, another high profile accused, will have to spend his entire remaining life behind bars, it said and described communal violence as “cancer”.

Seven other convicts were given jail term of 21 years by Additional Principal Judge Jyotsna Yagnik. They will also have to first serve 10-year imprisonment under Section 326.

The remaining 22 convicts were given simple life imprisonment (14 years).

The Court had on Wednesday convicted 32 and acquitted 29 persons in the worst riots case in the aftermath of the Godhra train carnage. It did not pronounce sentence against one accused who is absconding.

“Communal riots are like cancer on Constitutional secularism and the incident in Naroda Patiya was a black chapter in the history of the Indian Constitution,” the Judge observed.

“Acts of communal violence are brutal, inhuman and shameful. It (Naroda) was a clear incident of human rights violation as 97 people were killed brutally within a day which included helpless women, children, aged persons. The climax of this inhuman and brutal act of violence was reflected in murder of an infant, who was 20-day old,” the Court noted.

The Judge accepted that one victim, who was also a witness, was gang raped, but due to lack of evidence, the court has not charged anybody for that offence.

However, the court directed the Gujarat Government to pay Rs 5 lakh as compensation to the victim.

Rejecting the defence theory that the communal violence was a reaction to the Godhra carnage, the court said, “This was a pre-planned conspiracy and it cannot be mitigated just by saying it was a reaction of Godhra train burning incident. Nobody can be allowed to take law into their hands because India is a country that upholds rule of law.”

The Court’s inclination was against awarding death penalty in the case.

“Death penalty brings justice and it is desirable to reduce the crime in the society but this court cannot overlook the global trend prevalent in recent years. By 2009, 139 countries had repealed death sentence and there is a global campaign against death penally and progressive societies are advocating for restricting death penalty and this court believes use of death undermines human dignity.”

Regarding Kodnani, the court observed that she was the “kingpin of entire riots” that took place in Naroda Patiya area. She led the mob and incited them for violence. She abetted and supported the violent mob, it said.

Kodanai, who was MLA of Naroda at the time of riots, was made Minister of State for Women and Child Development in 2007 in the Narendra Modi Government. She had to resign after she was arrested in the case in March 2009.

The three-time legislator, who was considered close to Chief Minister Narendra Modi, is the first woman to be convicted in a post-Godhra riots case. Kodnani, who was present in the court, broke down after she was sentenced.

The massacre had taken place a day after the Godhra train burning incident of February 27, 2002.

On February 28, 2002, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) had called a state-wide bandh to protest against the Godhra train carnage. On that a large crowd gathered in Naroda Patiya area in Ahmedabad and attacked people belonging to minority community, resulting in the death of 97 people and injury to 33 others.

Ram Narayan Kumar- A born Human Rights Activist


 

Aug 31, 1956- June 28, 2009

Ram Narayan Kumar, former director of SAFHR’s South Asian Orientation Course in Human Rights and Peace Studies, was the full time Director of the Understanding Impunity project.Kumar had been involved with human rights and democracy issues in the region since 1975 when he was imprisoned for 19 months for his vocal opposition to Indira Gandhi‘s Emergency regime that lasted till March 1977. Kumar’s work for justice and accountability in Punjab is widely recognized. A founder member of the Committee for Information and Initiative on Punjab, which petitioned the Supreme Court in April 1995 for a comprehensive investigation on the matter of police abductions resulting in the secret cremations in Punjab, Kumar is the lead author of Reduced to Ashes

For almost a quarter of a century, he championed Sikh rights in Punjab through investigative journalism, historical research and uncompromising fight for State accountability. His landmark publication, Reduced to Ashes : TheInsurgency and Human Rights in Punjab, (SAFHR, 2003), which he co-author  dwith colleagues on the Coordination Committee for Disappearances in Punjab (CCDP), of whihc I was a part as well for a year, is a meticulous documentation of over 600 cases of human rights abuse in Punjab. It led to charges being filed against police officials, but more importantly, it raised awareness of abuses in Punjab across the world. He is also the author of Sikh Unrest and the Indian State: Politics, personalities and historical retrospective (Ajanta Publications, New Delhi, 1997); The Sikh Struggle: Origin, Evolution and Present Phase (Chanakya Publications, Delhi, 1991) and [Terror in Punjab] Terror in Punjab : Narratives, Knowledge and Truth (Shipra Publications, Delhi, 2008).

Ram played a major role in all aspects of the movement for accountability in Punjab. For example, he worked with Jaswant Singh Khalra in exposing mass cremations of victims of disappearances and killings, he spearheaded the People’s Commission on Human Rights Violations as well as the Committee for Coordination on Disappearances in Punjab, and he contributed to all major litigation such as the petition to bring charges against KPS Gill for his role in Khalra’s murder and the Punjab mass cremations case.

“A forthright critic of state repression in Punjab, Jammu and Kashmir, Northeast India, Nepal and other parts of the subcontinent, Kumar was a deeply committed fighter for human rights and accountability. Kumar’s work through SAFHR on impunity in the region was based not only on meticulous research and sharp insights, but also on profound empathy, compassion and an unwavering passion for social justice.“—Tapan Kumar Bose, South Asia Forum for Human Rights & Sushil Pyakurel, Accountability Watch Committee, Nepal.

 

Join his facebook page here- https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ram-Narayan-Kumar/125883042177?ref=ts

Documentary by  RamNnarayan Kumar, investigating the 50000 plus sikh members who have been mudered by the indian government in the genocide killing fields of punjab. note recently indian government have offered minimal compensation to some of the victims as an admission of guilt by no justice

A short clip of Interveiw with Ram Narayn Kumar on illegal cremations and Jaswant Singh Khalra