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Court dismisses Zakia Jaffery’s plea against Modi in 2002 Gujrat riots case

Gujrat: Indian Gujrat High court has rejected the last appeal of Zakia Jaffery whose husband was also the victim of 2002 Gujrat riots. Court has cleared the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in last riots case.

The court rejected pleas from Jafri  whose husband was killed in the riots  and Citizen for Justice and Peace activist Teesta Setalvad, and ruled that there was “not a larger conspiracy” in the 2002 Gujarat riots.

Justice Sonia Gokani, while presiding over the bench hearing the case, said that the issue of conspiracy was dealt with in a special court which had earlier conducted the trial in the Gulbarg Society massacre case.

However, according to TOI, the court allowed Jafri to retain the right to challenge the lower court’s decision, which said that it had no power to direct the special investigation team to probe the case further.

Zakia Jafri, a frail 78-year-old, had begun what was said to be the last legal battle to pin blame on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for deadly riots that shook the state of Gujarat when he was chief minister, and claimed her husband’s life.

Modi denies any involvement in the 2002 unrest, one of the worst outbreaks of religious violence in independent India.

In 2013, a panel appointed by the Supreme Court had said there was insufficient evidence to prosecute him.

It was the third investigation to come to the same conclusion.

Since then, the prime minister has shed his international image as a hard line Hindu nationalist, adopted the mantle of progressive economic reformer, won a landslide election in 2014 and earned a place at the high table of global leaders.

“My case is not just against the foot soldiers,” Jafri had said in a 2015 interview.

Jafri’s was the last case still in the court system filed after the riots that tried to implicate Modi.

“It is against those who allowed the foot soldiers to operate,” she had said in an interview in Ahmedabad, commercial capital of Gujarat where her husband was slain.

“It is against those who created the situation for the foot soldiers to get provoked and enabled them to operate — it is against Modi.”