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Naroda Gam massacre case: ‘Amit Shah’s statement defending Maya Kodnani should be discarded’

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Amit Shah BJP

August 2 : In the trial of the Naroda Gam massacre case of the 2002 post-Godhra riots, the Supreme Court appointed-Special Investigation Team (SIT) argued before a special court that the deposition of BJP president Amit Shah “should not be considered believable” as it was done merely to “support” key accused former BJP minister Maya Kodnani.

“AMit Shah’s statement should be discarded as he recorded the statement 15 years after the incident which is not relevant now. It was done only to support Maya Kodnani as both were MLAs back then,” Special Public Prosecutor Gaurang Vyas said.

Shah gave the statement in September 2017

Vyas argued that “Amit Shah’s presence at Sola Civil hospital is also doubtful as despite being an MLA (back in 2002) nobody, even the accused like Babu Bajrangi, Jaideep Patel ever mentioned his presence.”

Sola civil hospital is the place where the bodies of karsewaks had been brought from Godhra.

In her defence, Maya Kodnani has said that she was at this hospital with Amit Shah when riots broke out in Naroda Gam area on February 28, 2002. She had got summons issued to Shah for his deposition. Shah appeared in court and recorded his statement that he saw Maya Kodnani.

Shah had said that he saw Kodnani first at Vidhan Sabha at 8.30 am. From Vidhan Sabha he left for Sola civil hospital where angry relatives of the Godhra train carnage had gathered to collect the bodies.

In his statement, Shah had said: “Since slogans were being shouted against the incident and there was chaos, a police team escorted me and Mayaben out of the hospital and took us to a police jeep since my vehicle was parked a little far. I can’t say exactly but it was around 11 am to 11.15 am. I was dropped near Gota chowkdi where I got into my own vehicle.”

Vyas argued that Shah’s presence at the hospital never came into the case records until two of Kodnani’s defence witnesses Natubhai Vaghela and Bharat Kantibhai Patel deposed last year.

Last year, the accused including Kodnani had brought more than 50 persons in their defence for the first time.

The SIT will continue examining the deposition of two more defence witnesses of Kodnani. Meanwhile, lawyer Shamshad Pathan sought permission from the court for arguing on behalf of the victims. The court asked him to file an application. It will be heard on Friday.

In the Naroda Gam case, 82 accused are facing trial including former BJP minister Maya Kodnani and Babu Bajrangi who are accused of killing 11 Muslims.

India

BKU leader accuses govt of acts to disrupt tractor rally

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Rakesh Tikait
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A day after the protesting farmers leaders on Delhi’s Singhu border caught a person who confessed to hatching a conspiracy to disrupt the proposed tractor rally on January 26, Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) spokesperson Rakesh Tikait on Saturday alleged that the Centre and the administration are the ones behind such a “conspiracy”.

The farmer leader alleged that a conspiracy has been hatched to kill four of them and create disturbances during their tractor rally. The person was later handed over to the Haryana Police.

Tikait told IANS: “The man caught from the Singhu border’s protest site was a member of the gang. Only the central government and the administration can carry out such acts.”

“The government has been saying that the tractor rally on January 26 will be violent. How do they know that it will be violent?”

“1Our movement has been quite peaceful for the last two months,” the BKU leader added.

“The apprehended man was associated with a 10-member gang. We have handed him over to the police. Which agency will interrogate him is a matter to be seen,” he said.

Tikait said, “The same people were also part of Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar’s programme. It has now been revealed that the government is behind all such acts.”

“Where there is a mob, violence has to be forcefully created and such an action is resorted to by the administration. These gangs have been imparted training, the same people are part of the mob and commit violence. “

“We have nearly 200 volunteers deployed at various borders of Delhi who are monitoring such suspicious people. We want a peaceful protest,” the BKU leader added.

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India

Terror hideout busted, ammunition recovered in J&K

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Indian Army Kashmir
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A large quantity of arms and ammunition was recovered after a terrorist hideout was busted by the security forces in the Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday, officials said.

According to details, the security forces received specific input about the presence of a terrorist hideout in a forested area in Mandi.

A joint team of the Border Security Force, police and army carried out the operation.

The hideout was busted and a large quantum of arms and ammunition was recovered including one AK-47 rifle, three AK-magazines, 82 AK rounds, three Chinese pistols, five pistol magazines, 33 rounds of pistol ammunition, four hand grenades and one Under Barrel Grenade Launcher (UBGL).Searches were undergoing in the area.

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India, China to hold 9th round of talks to resolve border dispute

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India China
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Indian and Chinese militaries will hold a ninth round of talks aimed at resolving the border disputes in Eastern Ladakh after a deadlock prevailed since the last negotiations in November 2020, sources said.

The latest “Corps Commander level meet is likely to take place in the next few days, probably in a day or two”, the sources, adding contours of the dialogue were being worked out and some changes are expected.

A Ministry of External Affairs representative is likely to be part of the dialogue.

The eight round had taken place on November 6, 2020.

Though the talks ended in a deadlock, both countries agreed to maintain dialogue and communication through military and diplomatic channels, and also to take forward the discussions, push for the settlement of other outstanding issues, so as to jointly maintain peace and tranquillity in the border areas.

Earlier this month, Indian Army chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane had said that the force is ready for a long haul along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), while hoping for an amicable solution in its nine-month-long conflict with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army.

“We are prepared to hold our ground where we are for as long as it takes to achieve our national goals and interest,” he had said.

On August 30, 2020, India had occupied critical mountain heights on the southern bank of the Pangong Lake like Rechin La, Rezang La, Mukpari, and Tabletop that were unmanned till now.

India has also made some deployments near Blacktop also after the Chinese tried to make a provocative military move.

Now, dominance at these 13 peaks allow India to dominate Spangur Gap under the Chinese control and also the Moldo garrison on the Chinese side.

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