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Magistrate likely to pronounce order on Zakia’s petition today

The court of metropolitan magistrate is likely to pronounce its order on Monday on Zakia Jafri’s plea protesting closure report of Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team, giving clean chit to Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and others with regard to alleged conspiracy behind the 2002 riots.

The pronouncement of order was deferred on 28 October for Monday after arguments on Jafri’s petition by her lawyers and SIT’s counsel had continued for five months before metropolitan magistrate B J Ganatra.

After completion of arguments, Jafri’s lawyer handed over written submissions to the court on 18 September while SIT filed its written submissions on 30 September.

Magistrate Ganatra had then said that he would pronounce the order on 28 October. However, on 28 October, the magistrate deferred pronouncement of order for 2 December.

Jafri, whose husband and former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri was among 69 people killed in the Gulbarg society massacre here during the 2002 post-Godhra riots, had filed a petition objecting the SIT’s closure report absolving Modi of any conspiracy.

After completing its investigation on Jafri’s complaint, SIT, on 8 February, 2012, had filed the probe report concluding that despite difficulties in obtaining evidence in the case because of the lapse of eight years, whatever material it could gather was not sufficient enough to prosecute those against whom allegations of hatching conspiracy for 2002 riots had been levelled.

Protesting SIT’s report, Jafri, on 15 April this year, filed a petition demanding the rejection of report as well as an order from the court to file charge sheet against Modi and others.

While defending its report and demanding the rejection of Jafri’s petition, SIT counsel R S Jamuar had submitted that no direct or circumstantial evidence has been found during its investigation which can prima facie support Jafri’s allegations.
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