Ex-IAS officers urge SC to clarify riots observation not meant for Teesta Indian Express

07, Jul 2022

On July 2, an Ahmedabad court remanded Setalvad to 14-day judicial custody.

Crime branch officials produce social activist Teesta Setalvad at Metropolitan Magistrate Court, in Ahmedabad. (PTI)

In an “open letter”, a group of 92 former civil servants have called for withdrawal of the Supreme Court’s observations on activist Teesta Sitalvad in the case that upheld the SIT’s clean chit to Narendra Modi in 2002 Gujarat riots.

Requesting the Supreme Court to issue a clarification that it’s observations were not meant for Setalvad’s arrest—which happened a day later— and also order her release, the letter has noted signatories as former Union Home Secretary G K Pillai, Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh, former Chief Information Commissioner Wajahat Habibullah, former Health Secretary K Sujatha Rao, retired IPS officer A S Dulat and former IAS officer Aruna Roy.

On July 2, an Ahmedabad court remanded Setalvad to 14-day judicial custody.

“Every day of silence lowers the prestige of the court and raises questions about its determination to uphold a core precept of the Constitution: safeguarding the basic right to life and liberty against questionable actions of the state,” said the letter.

In the case of the Gujarat SIT’s clean chit to Modi, a three-judge bench verdict in the Zakia Ahsan Jafri vs State of Gujarat, on June 24, 2022 has, “to say the least, left citizens totally disturbed and dismayed,” the letter issued on Wednesday said.

The “gratuitous comments” that the bench made about the appellants, their counsel and supporters, has “surprised people”, the letter said.

“In the most astonishing comment, the Supreme Court has lauded the officials of the Special Investigation Team who have defended the State and has excoriated the appellants who have challenged the findings of the SIT,” it said.

The original piece may be read here


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