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Guj govt to table 2nd part of Nanavati panel report in budget session

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: September 6, 2019  | 18:41 IST

Ahmedabad, Sep 6 (PTI) The state government on Friday told the Gujarat High Court that it will table part two of the Justice Nanavati-Mehta Commission report on the 2002 Gujarat riots before the Legislative Assembly in the budget session. The statement came in response to a public interest litigation filed by former IPS officer R B Sreekumar, seeking a direction to the state government to make the report public. Advocate General Kamal Trivedi told a division bench of justices S R Brahmbhatt and A P Thaker that the government had decided to table part two of the report "in the ensuing budget session of the Legislative Assembly". "While categorically denying all the allegations.... in the petition, it is stated that part-I of the report of Justice Nanavati-Mehta Commission has already been tabled on 25.09.2009 in the Assembly," it said. The commission had submitted its final report (containing part two) on November 18, 2014, to then chief minister Anandiben Patel. It has been withheld since. Sreekumar, a former state director general of police who had filed affidavits before the Nanavati commission and questioned "inaction" by the state government during the post-Godhra riots, made a representation to chief minister Patel in November 2015, demanding that the entire report be made public. Last month, he moved the high court "against inaction on the part of the state of Gujarat, especially the chief secretary" in not tabling the full report before the assembly. He cited section 3 (4) of the Commissions of Inquiry Act, 1952, saying the law requires that such reports have to be published within six months. Then chief minister Narendra Modi on February 28, 2002 announced a one-man commission to inquire into the cause of the Godhra train burning incident that had killed 59 passengers the day before. The train burning incident led to widespread riots in Gujarat. The government later reconstituted the commission, making it two-member, with Justice G T Nanavati, former Supreme Court judge, as its chairman and Justice K G Shah, a former high court judge, a member. After Shah passed away, Justice A K Mehta, also a former high court judge, took his place. The government also expanded the terms of reference of the commission, bringing under its purview the role and conduct of the chief minister, ministers and police officers during the riots. In the PIL, Sreekumar said the report is required to be looked at in its totality, as the terms of reference of the commission "irrevocably club" the Godhra incident and the subsequent riots in which over a thousand people died. PTI KA PD KRK SNE SNE

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