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Gujarat 2002 Riots: Supreme Court Closes All Pending Pleas Seeking Intervention

The court held that the pleas had "become infructuous in view of the subsequent developments in the matter."
UU lalit

Representational use only.Image Courtesy: ANI

New Delhi: The Supreme Court disposed of 11 pleas filed to seek its intervention in the Gujarat riots cases. The pleas had been pending since 2002-03. The court held that the pleas had "become infructuous in view of the subsequent developments in the matter."

The matter was decided by a three-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) UU Lalit, which mentioned that the main plea sought a transfer of the investigation into post-Godhra riots cases in Gujarat to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which was earlier dismissed by the high court. Subsequently, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) filed a similar petition.

The bench, which included Justice S Ravindra Bhat and JB Pardiwala, said that the court had decided to constitute a Special Investigation Team (SIT) after considering these matters. The SIT was given the task of investigating and prosecuting nine major trials.

Appearing for the SIT, senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi said that the trial courts have concluded trials in eight of those nine cases. He also said that only the Naroda Gaon case trial is pending, which is also going through the final stages of arguments. The bench directed the Naroda Gaon case trial to be completed per the law.

The bench noted that the counsel who appeared for the petitioners also "fairly accepted that the matters have now become infructuous." It added that the only matter that may require consideration is the plea for the "restoration of protection to Mumbai-based activist Teesta Setalvad."

"Since all the matters have now become infructuous, this court is of the view that it need not entertain these petitions any longer. Disposed of as having become infructuous," the bench ordered. It held that Setalvad "is at liberty to make appropriate prayer to the concerned authority" in the matter.

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