New Delhi: Two decades after the 2002 Gujarat riots, the Supreme Court on Friday upheld the 'clean chit' given to prime minister Narendra Modi and several others for their alleged role in the violence.
The top court gave its verdict while observing that the plea of Zakia Jafri, the wife of Congress MP Ehsan Jafri, killed in the violence is "devoid of merits" and deserves to be dismissed.
"We don't countenance the submission of the appellant (ZakiaJafri) regarding infraction of rule of law regarding the investigation and the approach of the Magistrate and the High Court in dealing with the final report," the Supreme Court said in its verdict.
Zakia Jafri had moved the apex court challenging the clean chit given by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) to then Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi and several others in the Gujarat riots case.
The massacre at Ahmedabad's Gulbarg Society - a cluster of 29 bungalows and 10 apartment buildings housing mostly Muslims - was among the 10 major Gujarat riot cases re-investigated by the special team appointed by the Supreme Court.
Ehsan Jafri, a former Congress parliamentarian, was among 68 people dragged out, hacked, and burnt by the rioters. The Congress leader's frantic phone calls to police officers and senior politicians for help went unanswered, Zakia Jafri had alleged.
The Special Investigation Team or SIT had submitted its closure report in February 2012 - a decade after the riots - and exonerated Prime Minister Modi and 63 others, citing "no prosecutable evidence".
In 2016, a special court in Ahmedabad convicted 24 attackers for the massacre that the court described as the "darkest day in the history of civil society." But the court, which also acquitted 36 people including a BJP corporator in this case, underlined that there was a no larger conspiracy.
Over 1,000 people, mostly Muslims, were killed in the three-day violence in Gujarat in 2002.