On 12 September 2011, the Supreme Court directed the Special Investigation Team (SIT) to submit its final report in the Ehsan Jafri case to the trial court in Gujarat. Ehsan Jafri was a 70 year old Congress MP who was killed, along with 35 others, in what has now come to be known as the “Gulbarg society massacre”.
Gulbarg society was a largely Muslim society situated in the middle of Chamanpura – a Hindu majority area in Ahmedabahd. On February 28 2002, one day after rioting had begin in Gujarat, eye witnesses say that a Hindu mob had gathered outside the Gulbarg society and begun shouting slogans. As the crowd began to get increasingly aggressive many of the residents sought refuge in the home of Ehsan Jafri. Survivor accounts state that Jafri had called for help repeatedly, but nothing was done – even when the mob began attacking the perimeter of the society at around noon.
Unchecked, the mob then broke into the society, torched houses and began attacking residents. Ehsan Jafri himself was dragged out of his house, hacked and burnt alive. Another 30 people were declared ‘missing’ after the incident. In 2009, K G Erda, a deputy Superintendent was arrested on charges of dereliction of duty and for tampering of evidence. Survivors allege that Erda not only allowed the Gulbarg society killings to happen but also helped rioters to burn the dead bodies.
Today the society is largely abandoned, with families who survived refusing to return except for memorial services help to commemorate the anniversary of the massacre.