Naroda Patiya riots: Supreme Court grants bail to four convicts, says 'conviction order is debatable'
The Supreme Court has granted bail to four convicts — Umeshbhai Bharwad, Rajkumar, Harshad and Prakashbhai Rathod — in the 2002 Naroda Patiya riots case.
Nearly 100 Muslims were killed in Ahmedabad's Naroda Patiya area on 28 February, 2002, in communal riots.
They were convicted by the Gujarat High Court for arson and rioting.
The four convicts were serving 10-year jail terms.
New Delhi: The Supreme Court has granted bail to four convicts in the Naroda Patiya massacre case in Gujarat, in which 97 people were killed by a mob during the 2002 riots in the state. "The conviction order is debatable," the bench said.
A bench headed by Justice AM Khanwilkar Tuesday granted bail to the four convicts — Umeshbhai Surabhai Bharwad, Rajkumar, Padmendrasinh Jaswantsinh Rajput and Harshad alias Mungda Jila Govind Chhara Parmar.
The Gujarat High Court had on 20 April last year upheld the conviction of 12 of the 29 accused who were pronounced guilty on various charges by the trial court and had acquitted 17 others, including former BJP minister Maya Kodnani.
The rioting had taken place on 28 February, 2002, in the Naroda Patiaya area of Ahmedabad where a mob had killed 97 people, most of them from a minority community.
The massacre had taken place a day after the torching of the Sabarmati Express at Godhra, which had triggered state-wide riots.
Ten people, including Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Mishra's son Ashish Mishra, have been arrested so far in connection with the case
The Delhi Police Crime Branch had on Tuesday registered an FIR after 32 officials of Tihar Jail were found to be complicit with the imprisoned duo - Ajay Chandra and Sanjay Chandra
In the last hearing the apex court had reprimanded the UP police for “dragging its feet” in the investigation after it found out that the statements of only four out of 44 witnesses has been taken