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Gujarat
2002


Justice
Delivery : A Fractured Process

March 28 2011


On March 23rd 2011, 
the Forum Against the Oppression of Women (FAOW) & Citizens for
Justice and Peace (CJP) jointly held a press meet on Women Survivors
and the Justice Process in Gujarat…The meeting raised issues related
to Mass Crimes, the Narrative of Gender Violence and Women. The CEDAW
Committee Recs dated Oct 2010 made it relevant and topical.
(link……)

The grit and courage of the survivors has enabled the narrative of
gender violence that had been blotted out of the debate due to state
propaganda and repression to return within the courts, forcing the
justice process to take congisance of how women were brutalised during
the 2002 violence and consistently by the state and non state actors
thereafter. The fact that investigating agencies including the Supreme
Court appointed SIT has not moved Courts for the cancellation of bail
of the perpetrators has meant that victim survivors and eyewitnesses
have had to depose in Court within Gujarat while the perpetrators roam
the neighbourhoods issuing threats and innuendoes. At present victims
and witneses have been given protection but what happens once the
trials are completed. The pernicious manner in which the state, ie the
government of Gujarat using sections of the media have tries to blur
not just the narrative of gender violence but in the process,
victimise and intimidate survivors and human rights defenders can be
seen in the manner in which the Kauser Bano case has been mauled by a
superficial and callous media. The real design behind recent attempts
at intimidation and slander (the narrative of doctpring evidence and
affidavits) is actually aimed at creating a defence against the
conviction of 350 plus perpetrators in the Gulberg Society, Naroda
Patia, Naroda Gaam, Sardarpura and Odh trials.

The team of 26 lawyers working with CJP and the survivors to ensure
their legal protection during the trials do so at great professional
and personal risk. In a maliciously communal atmosphere in the state,
even lawyers have been threatened in Courts and the Bar association of
the State has been singularly one sided in targeting those advocates
who appear for the victims against the perpetrators.

These were the issues that were discussed at length at the meet.

Please
do attend and give wide coverage to the event

The
struggle for justice against the perpetrators of the Gujarat genocidal
pogrom is at a critical stage with eight of the post Godhra cases
reaching conclusion. There is possibilities of conviction of more than
350 plus perpetrators. A process made possible for the first time in
the prosecution of mass crimes in India. In parallel, the historic
complaint by a woman survivor Mrs Zakia Ahsan Jafri backed by a legal
rights group Citizens for Justice and Peace against the chief minister
and 61 others has also reached a crucial stage.

Over the
past nine years, grit, determination, depression and satisfaction have
meant highs and lows for the battle. But what has the nitty gritty of
the justice delivery process meant for women and men survivors? People
who have been deposing with courage and conviction as eye witnesses in
the trial process of courts in Ahmedabad, Anand and Mehsana within
Gujarat – they had to struggle to get their voices heard, evidence
recorded and had to go up to the high court to ensure legal
representation under Section 24(8)(2) of the Cr. PC. A hostile
atmosphere, non empathetic judicial officers and prosecutors have not
deterred survivors from stating their case.

For the
women’s movement, the narrative of sexual violence has returned, re
surfaced despite the best efforts of the Gujarat State and Perpetrator
Accused to use propaganda to state that brute gender violence was
never the sub text of the pogrom.

To share
these experiences and to reveal the correct face of the democratic
judicial system in Gujarat we have a few survivors coming from
Ahmedabad to talk of these and other struggles they are waging
everyday of their life. They are,

·Rupaben
Modi, Survivor & Eyewitness of Gulberg Society Massacre,

·
Jannatbi Kallubhai Shaikh, Survivor & Eyewitness of Naroda Patiya
Massacre,

·
Shakila Ferozbhai Pathan, Survivor & Eyewitness of Naroda Patiya
Massacre,

·
Farzana Aiyub Shaikh, Survivor & Eyewitness of Naroda Patiya Massacre,

·
Sairaben and Salimbhai Sandhi survivors of the Gulberg Massacre,

·
Shabana Mansuri advocate for CJP and before Nanavati Comission

·Teesta
Setalvad Secretary Citizens for Justice and Peace

Date:
23rd March 2010

Time:
3.00pm to 6.00 pm


Venue: Mumbai Marathi Patrakar Sangh, Mumbai

 


 

 


 

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