SC begins hearing sacked IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt’s plea for probing role of BJP, RSS leaders in post-Godhra riots
The Supreme Court today began hearing the pleas of dismissed Gujarat Cadre IPS officer and known Modi-baiter Sanjiv Bhatt seeking SIT probe into allegation of misuse of state machinery during 2002 post-Godhra riots and the alleged roles of top BJP and RSS functionaries and some senior bureaucrats.
Appearing for Bhatt, senior advocate and former ASG Indira Jaising requested a bench headed by Chief Justice H L Dattu for an SIT probe into two FIRs against Bhatt.
The hearing will continue tomorrow.
After keeping him under suspension for nearly five years, Bhatt was sacked on August 18.
Bhatt had moved the SC four year ago accusing the then Modi government of attempting to blunt his untiring efforts to expose the state's role in fanning the riots by lodging an inspired FIR against him in 2011 accusing him of forcing a government servant to give false evidence to establish his presence during a high-level meeting called by the then CM to discuss the riots.
Bhatt moved the fresh application requesting the SC to add BJP president Amit Shah and S Gurumurthy as parties in his petition as they were "part of the larger design to subvert the course of justice", both before the SC and the trial court in the riot cases.
The SC-appointed SIT headed by former CBI director R K Raghavan had given a clean chit to Modi after investigating similar charges made by Jakia Jafri, whose husband and former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri was killed by rioters.
Bhatt claims he filed the application seeking impleadment of Shah, Gurumurthy and two Gujarat government officials - G C Murmu who was then principal secretary to Modi and then state home ministry official Vijay Badekha - in his petition after stumbling upon "incriminating material" in the emails of then additional advocate general and present additional solicitor general Tushar Mehta which showed that they were part of a conspiracy to subvert the course of justice in riot cases.
The IPS officer had filed petitions in the apex court in 2011 against the lodging of FIRs against him by the Gujarat Police. One of the petitions pertains to an FIR lodged by a Gujarat police constable in Ahmedabad alleging that Bhatt had pressurised him to sign an affidavit testifying that the IPS officer participated in a high-level meeting after the Godhra carnage.
In another FIR, he has been accused of allegedly hacking then state's Additional Advocate General Tushar Mehta's e-mail account. Mehta is currently the Additional Solicitor General of India.
In fresh applications, the sacked IPS officer had also sought to implead top BJP and RSS leaders and senior IAS officers alleging that they were were part of a larger conspiracy to subvert ends of justice.
The apex court had earlier stayed the criminal proceedings against the officer. In the applications, he has submitted that in 2011, he had sought probe by the CBI but now since the agency is under the control of the Centre, there was a need of an independent Special Investigating Team (SIT) to probe both the cases. He has sought fresh investigation against him in all cases with a plea for direction to internet service providers to preserve all data he has put in the applications.