Tuesday, 11 March 2014

2014-01-27 An appeal to direct Indian Army Authorities to submit report on operational duties performed by Army in Gujarat State during 2002

R.B. SREEKUMAR IPS (Retd)
Former DGP, Gujarat
“ Sreelekshmideepam”
Plot No 193, Sector-8,
Gandhinagar-382007
Gujarat
www. harmonynotes.in
Tel ® 079-23247876
(M) 09428016117
Letter No.21/2013-MOD-RIOTS

Dated 27/01/2014

Sub:            An appeal to direct CPMF Authorities and MHA to submit reports on operational duties performed by them in Gujarat State during 2002 communal riots to probe bodies.

 

 

Respected Sir,

 

                   I belonged to 1971 batch of Indian Police Service (IPS) of Gujarat State cadre. I retired from service on 28 February 2007 in the rank of Director General of Police(DGP). Since my retirement, I am residing in Gandhinagar, Gujarat and providing free legal aid to victims of 2002 communal violence and those affected by human rights violations, as a lawyer.


2)                            I was Additional DGP ( Intelligence ) – ADGP(Int), in charge of the State Intelligence Branch(SIB) of Gujarat state from 9 April 2002 to 18 September 2002. I had submitted nine affidavits(660 pages) to Justice Nanavati Commission (JNC) and the Apex Court constituted Special Investigation Team (SIT) headed by Dr. RK Raghavan, former Director, CBI----four while in service and five after retirement. In these affidavits, I had presented substantial and solid evidence on the background, course and aftermath of 2002 communal violence in Gujarat. The data/evidence in my affidavits have comprehensively brought out,(1) the culpable role of the political and administrative bureaucracy and police, in Gujarat, in planning , organizing, mobilizing, facilitating , abetting and perpetration of anti-minority mass violence in 2002; (2) the subversion, manipulation and enfeeblement of the Criminal Justice System (CJS) of Gujarat State, to deny, delay and derail justice delivery to  riot victims and also about;(3) the extra judicial killings (fake encounters) of 17 people by Gujarat Police, from Oct.2002 to April- 2007.

3)                The State Govt and accused persons in riot cases could not prove any part of evidence presented by me as false. The riot victim survivors and NGOs like Citizens for Justice and Peace(CJP) had extensively utilized materials in my affidavits in their litigations to prove the guilt of the Chief Minister Narendra Modi, senior BJP and Sangh Parivar leaders and Govt. officials in the communal violence. Some of these cases are pending in the courts. Thanks to the close monitoring of  riot-related cases by many of us, 116 rioters, including a former Gujarat State Minister had been convicted by courts, with life imprisonment and it is an unprecedented achievement in the history of prosecution of offenders responsible for anti-muslim violence in India, since 1947.

4)      The state Govt. had appointed a Judicial Commission, Justice Nanavati Commission(JNC)-to probe into multifarious aspects of 2002  anti-minority carnage in Gujarat, in March 2002. The copies of two Notifications by the state Legal Dept(1) Dated 6th March 2002 and (2) Dated 20 July 2004, delineating terms of  reference of probe by the JNC and  Notification by the JNC dated 5th August 2004 “inviting persons acquainted with the subject matter of the enquiry to provide information on matters in the terms of reference to the JNC” are appended as Annexure – A,B, and C, respectively.

5)                The riot victim survivors since 2010 had, repeatedly, complained to me about failure of the JNC and the SIT in getting evidence from Central Para Military Forces(CPMF), under the Ministry of Home Affairs(MHA), Govt. of  India, deployed in Gujarat during 2002 riots, for assisting Civil and Police authorities in maintenance of law and order. I had submitted representation/affidavit, to the JNC and the SIT in this matter. The copy of this affidavit is appended as Annexure-D, for your kind perusal.

6)                Reportedly, whenever and wherever CPMF are deployed, in aid to state authorities, under provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code(CRPC), the supervisory officers scrupulously comply with the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and do maintain documents, prescribed registers and records about (1) instructions and guidance received from the state authorities, mainly from officers in the departments of Executive Magistracy and State Police, on public order duties; (2) the area-specific and incident-specific procedure adopted by CPMF officers in their operations;(3) impact of their action towards normalization of situation;(4) details of commendable work and deviant acts, if any , committed by Civil and Police authorities and CPMF functionaries and so on. Periodical mandatory reports about work done in cooperation and collaboration with the state authorities are sent to respective CPMF Head Quarters and MHA. These reports are quite relevant to the terms of reference to the JNC, as narrated in the enclosed Annexures-A, B, and  C and cases investigated by the SIT. It is really quite imperative for the probe bodies to get and assess this germane evidence for deciding on the quality and merit in the action taken by state Govt. functionaries, in their public order duties, in the perspective of the Rule of law.

7)      It is learnt that CPMF officers deployed in Gujarat during 2002 riots, had submitted comprehensive reports to their higher authorities and MHA about the operations done by them, the policy, strategy, tactics and ground level methodology adopted by  the state authorities, particularly,  police and executive magistracy, in the course of their duties for containing communal riots.

8)      Unfortunately, despite my specific representations to the JNC and the SIT, in my sixth affidavit dated 03 September 2010, (enclosed as annexure-D) for obtaining relevant evidence from CPMF authorities, relating to 2002 riots, both the JNC  and the SIT had neither procured documents and reports from CPMF Head Quarters and MHA, nor the depositions of the relevant officers and personnel, who assisted Gujarat Police in normalization of public order, were obtained, so far. The JNC is yet to submit its report on all terms of reference by the state Govt. Similarly, the final Judicial verdict on SIT investigation on riot cases and complaint against the Chief Minister Narendra Modi by Smt. Zakia Jafri and Smt. Teesta Setalvad, is still awaited.

9)      The Union Govt. as per stipulations in the Article 355 of the Constitution  of India, is duty-bound “ to protect every state against external aggression and internal disturbance and to ensure that the Govt. of every state is carried on in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution.” The thrust, tone and tenor of the Gujarat state Govt. Notifications (Annexure-A and B) and the Notification by the JNC ( Annexure –C) expected that all state and central Govt. functionaries should submit proper evidence, regarding riots, in the form of documents, records and self–generated affidavits. But this vital and imperative statutory duty is not yet done by MHA and the concerned officers, who performed law and order duties during 2002 Gujarat riots, after their deployment, on requisition by the state Govt.

10)    Moreover, in the individual capacity also CPMF officers are bound to provide relevant data and input to probe bodies like the JNC and the SIT, as per the Article 51A of the Constitution of India, which decreed thus “ It shall be the duty of every citizen of India to abide by the Constitution and respect its ideals and institutions”. Further, the Commission of Inquiry Act, 1952 guarantees blanket protection to all who provides truthful evidence “relevant to subject matter of the inquiry” to the Commission, as per section-6 of this Act. Therefore CPMF authorities would be committing serious dereliction of duty by not providing evidence to probe bodies on their performance of duties relating to maintenance of public order, during 2002 protracted communal riots in Gujarat.


11) The riot victim survivors and human rights activists often lamented that the state Govt. officials were forced to submit affidavits to the JNC and evidence to the SIT, as dictated, prepared, and tutored by state Govt. and its advocates. There is an instance( in 2004) of a senior officer-ADGP serving as ADGP (Intelligence), being intimidated and pressurized by state Home department officers and a Govt. advocate, to depose in favour of the state Govt. before the JNC (audio tape is available). Significantly, except three Senior IPS officers, no state Govt. functionary has come out with any incriminating evidence about numerous acts of omission and commission by the political and administrative executive and police officers and their delinquent acts  had only facilitated anti-muslim genocide, enabling communal brigands to commit many gruesome crimes during communal disturbances, in 11 out of 30 police- administrative units in Gujarat.

12)    So,  devoid of evidence from MHA and CPMF authorities, who were deployed in Gujarat during riots, for assisting state Govt., the probe bodies, the Judiciary, the Media and the final and basic sovereigns of the Nation “ We the people”, would not know about the actual truth behind the occurrence of high voltage violence in one-third area of Gujarat state in 2002, enfeeblement of the CJS, sub-standard justice delivery to riot-affected and related matters.


13)    In view of the above facts, I humbly request you for your kind personal intervention, for making CPMF authorities to provide, to probe bodies, (the JNC and the SIT), relevant and valid evidence and information about the prolonged communal riots in Gujarat in 2002  and thereby energize and strengthen the foundations of the Rule of law and fundamental ideals of the Constitution of India. The responsible CPMF officers, may kindly be directed to depose before the JNC and the SIT about their role during riots in Gujarat.

14)              The Heads of CPMF and MHA may please be directed to submit copies of all reports and extracts of registers and records relating to Gujarat riots in their possession, especially, situation reports received from  field officers about operational duties performed by CPMF as part of  their functions towards assistance to state police officers, during 2002  internal security crisis connected to communal riots in Gujarat.

15)              I humbly request you to favour me with a reply on the follow up action by MHA on this representation by me.


Thanking you.

To,

Respected Shri Sushil Kumar Shindeji,                                       Yours Faithfully
Hon’ble Union Minister,                                         
Ministry of Home Affiars,
North Block,                                                       
New Delhi-110001             
                                                                                                    (R.B. Sreekumar)
                                 


Copy with compliments to,
Respected Dr. Shrimati Kamalaji,
Her Excellency, The Governor of Gujarat,
Raj Bhavan, Gandhinagar-382020
With prayers for kind attention and initiating necessary action.


2014-01-27 An appeal to direct Indian Army Authorities to submit report on operational duties performed by Army in Gujarat State during 2002

R.B. SREEKUMAR IPS (Retd)
Former DGP, Gujarat
“ Sreelekshmideepam”
Plot No 193, Sector-8,
Gandhinagar-382007
Gujarat
www. harmonynotes.in
Tel ® 079-23247876
(M) 09428016117
Letter No.21/2013-MOD-RIOTS

Dated 27/01/2014

Sub:            An appeal to direct Indian Army Authorities to submit report on operational duties performed by Army in Gujarat State during 2002 communal riots to probe bodies.

 

 

Respected Sir,

 

                   I belonged to 1971 batch of Indian Police Service (IPS) of Gujarat State cadre. I retired from service on 28 February 2007 in the rank of Director General of Police(DGP). Since my retirement, I am residing in Gandhinagar, Gujarat and providing free legal aid to victims of 2002 communal violence and those affected by human rights violations, as a lawyer.


2)                            I was Additional DGP ( Intelligence ) – ADGP(Int), in charge of the State Intelligence Branch(SIB) of Gujarat state from 9 April 2002 to 18 September 2002. I had submitted nine affidavits(660 pages) to Justice Nanavati Commission (JNC) and the Apex Court constituted Special Investigation Team (SIT) headed by Dr. RK Raghavan, former Director, CBI----four while in service and five after retirement. In these affidavits, I had presented substantial and solid evidence on the background, course and aftermath of 2002 communal violence in Gujarat. The data/evidence in my affidavits have comprehensively brought out,(1) the culpable role of the political and administrative bureaucracy and police, in Gujarat, in planning , organizing, mobilizing, facilitating , abetting and perpetration of anti-minority mass violence in 2002; (2) the subversion, manipulation and enfeeblement of the Criminal Justice System (CJS) of Gujarat State, to deny, delay and derail justice delivery to  riot victims and also about;(3) the extra judicial killings (fake encounters) of 17 people by Gujarat Police, from Oct.2002 to April- 2007.

3)                The State Govt and accused persons in riot cases could not prove any part of evidence presented by me as false. The riot victim survivors and NGOs like Citizens for Justice and Peace(CJP) had extensively utilized materials in my affidavits in their litigations to prove the guilt of the Chief Minister Narendra Modi, senior BJP and Sangh Parivar leaders and Govt. officials in the communal violence. Some of these cases are pending in the courts. Thanks to the close monitoring of  riot-related cases by many of us, 116 rioters, including a former Gujarat State Minister had been convicted by courts, with life imprisonment and it is an unprecedented achievement in the history of prosecution of offenders responsible for anti-muslim violence in India, since 1947.

4)      The state Govt. had appointed a Judicial Commission, Justice Nanavati Commission(JNC)-to probe into multifarious aspects of 2002  anti-minority carnage in Gujarat, in March 2002. The copies of two Notifications by the state Legal Dept(1) Dated 6th March 2002 and (2) Dated 20 July 2004, delineating terms of  reference of probe by the JNC and  Notification by the JNC dated 5th August 2004 “inviting persons acquainted with the subject matter of the enquiry to provide information on matters in the terms of reference to the JNC” are appended as Annexure – A,B, and C, respectively.

5)                The riot victim survivors since 2010 had, repeatedly, complained to me about failure of the JNC and the SIT in getting evidence from Armed Forces, under the Ministry of Defence, (MOD) Govt. of  India, deployed in Gujarat during 2002 riots, for assisting Civil and Police authorities in maintenance of law and order. I had submitted representation/affidavit, to the JNC and the SIT in this matter. The copy of this affidavit is appended as Annexure-D, for your kind perusal.

6)                Reportedly, whenever and wherever Armed Forces are deployed, in aid to state authorities under sections 130, 131 and 132 of the Criminal Procedure Code(CRPC), the supervisory military officers scrupulously comply with the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and do maintain documents, prescribed registers and records about (1) instructions and guidance received from the state authorities, mainly from officers in the departments of Executive Magistracy and State Police, on public order duties; (2) the area-specific and incident-specific procedure adopted by Armed Forces in their operations;(3) impact of Army action towards normalization of situation;(4) details of commendable work and deviant acts, if any , committed by Civil and Police authorities and Armed Forces and so on. Periodical mandatory reports about work done in cooperation and collaboration with the state authorities are sent to Army  Head Quarters and MOD. These reports are quite relevant to the terms of reference to the JNC, as narrated in the enclosed Annexures-A, B, and  C and cases investigated by the SIT. It is really quite imperative for the probe bodies to get and assess this germane evidence for deciding on the quality and merit in the action taken by state Govt. functionaries, in their public order duties, in the perspective of the Rule of law.

7)      It is learnt that Major General  Zahiruddin Shah, now Vice- Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University,(a relative of the famous actor Nassaruddin Shah), who was in charge of Army Units deployed in Gujarat during 2002 riots, had submitted comprehensive reports to his higher authorities and MOD about the operations done by Army, the policy, strategy, tactics and  ground level methodology adopted by  the state authorities, particularly,  police and executive magistracy, in the course of their duties for containing communal riots.

8)      Unfortunately, despite my specific representations to the JNC and the SIT, in my sixth affidavit dated 03 September 2010, (enclosed as annexure-D) for obtaining relevant evidence from Army authorities, relating to 2002 riots, both the JNC  and the SIT had neither procured documents and reports from Army Head Quarters and MOD, nor the depositions of the relevant officers and personnel, who assisted Gujarat Police in normalization of public order, were obtained, so far. The JNC is yet to submit its report on all terms of reference by the state Govt. Similarly, the final Judicial verdict on SIT investigation on riot cases and complaint against the Chief Minister Narendra Modi by Smt. Zakia Jafri and Smt. Teesta Setalvad, is still awaited.

9)      The Union Govt. as per stipulations in the Article 355 of the Constitution  of India, is duty-bound “ to protect every state against external aggression and internal disturbance and to ensure that the Govt. of every state is carried on in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution.” The thrust, tone and tenor of the Gujarat state Govt. Notifications (Annexure-A and B) and the Notification by the JNC ( Annexure –C) expected that all state and central Govt. functionaries should submit proper evidence, regarding riots, in the form of documents, records and self–generated affidavits. But this vital and imperative statutory duty is not yet done by MOD and the concerned Army officers, who performed law and order duties during 2002 Gujarat riots, after their deployment, on requisition by the state Govt.

10)    Moreover, in the individual capacity also Army officers are bound to provide relevant data and input to probe bodies like the JNC and the SIT, as per the Article 51A of the Constitution of India, which decreed thus “ It shall be the duty of every citizen of India to abide by the Constitution and respect its ideals and institutions”. Further, the Commission of Inquiry Act, 1952 guarantees blanket protection to all who provides truthful evidence “relevant to subject matter of the inquiry” to the Commission, as per section-6 of this Act. Therefore Army authorities would be committing serious dereliction of duty by not providing evidence to probe bodies on their performance of duties relating to maintenance of public order, during 2002 protracted communal riots in Gujarat.


11) The riot victim survivors and human rights activists often lamented that the state Govt. officials were forced to submit affidavits to the JNC and evidence to the SIT, as dictated, prepared, and tutored by state Govt. and its advocates. There is an instance( in 2004) of a senior officer-ADGP serving as ADGP (Intelligence), being intimidated and pressurized by state Home department officers and a Govt. advocate, to depose in favour of the state Govt. before the JNC (audio tape is available). Significantly, except three Senior IPS officers, no state Govt. functionary has come out with any incriminating evidence about numerous acts of omission and commission by the political and administrative executive and police officers and their delinquent acts  had only facilitated anti-muslim genocide, enabling communal brigands to commit many gruesome crimes during communal disturbances, in 11 out of 30 police- administrative units in Gujarat.

12)    So,  devoid of evidence from MOD and Army authorities, who were deployed in Gujarat during riots, for assisting state Govt., the probe bodies, the Judiciary, the Media and the final and basic sovereigns of the Nation “ We the people”, would not know about the actual truth behind the occurrence of high voltage violence in one-third area of Gujarat state in 2002, enfeeblement of the CJS, sub-standard justice delivery to riot-affected and related matters.


13)    In view of the above facts, I humbly request you for your kind personal intervention, for making Army authorities to provide, to probe bodies, (the JNC and the SIT), relevant and valid evidence and information about the prolonged communal riots in Gujarat in 2002  and thereby energize and strengthen the foundations of the Rule of law and fundamental ideals of the Constitution of India. The responsible Army officers, particularly, Major General Zahiruddin Shah, may kindly be directed to depose before the JNC and the SIT about their role during riots in Gujarat.

14)              The Army Head Quarters and MOD may please be directed to submit copies of all reports and extracts of registers and records relating to Gujarat riots in their possession, especially, situation reports received from  field officers about operational duties performed by Army as part of  its functions towards “aid to civil authorities”  during 2002  internal security crisis connected to communal riots in Gujarat.

15)              I humbly request you to favour me with a reply on the follow up action by MOD on this representation by me.


Thanking you.

To,

Respected Shri A.K. Antonyji,                                                        Yours Faithfully
Hon’ble Union Minister,                          
Ministry of Defence,                                           
104 South Block,                                                              New Delhi-110001                                                                                                                                                             (R.B. Sreekumar)
                                       


Copy with compliments to,
Respected Dr. Shrimati Kamalaji,
Her Excellency, The Governor of Gujarat,
Raj Bhavan, Gandhinagar-382020
With prayers for kind attention and initiating necessary action.


2014-06-03 Request for directing Ministry of Defence(MOD) Ministry of Home Affairs(MHA) to submit documents and evidence relating to 2002

R.B. SREEKUMAR IPS (Retd.)
Former DGP, Gujarat
“ Sreelekshmideepam”
Plot No 193, Sector-8,
Gandhinagar-382007
Gujarat
www. harmonynotes.in
Tel ® 079-23247876
(M) 09428016117
Letter No.21-A/2014-PMO-RIOTS

Dated 06/03/2014

Sub:            Request for directing Ministry of Defence(MOD) and Ministry of Home Affairs(MHA) to submit documents and evidence relating to 2002 communal riots in Gujarat, to probe bodies.


 

 

Respected Sir,

 

                   I belonged to 1971 batch of Indian Police Service (IPS) of Gujarat State cadre. I retired from service on 28 February 2007 in the rank of Director General of Police(DGP). Since my retirement, I am residing in Gandhinagar, Gujarat and providing free legal aid to victims of 2002 communal violence and those affected by human rights violations, as a lawyer.


2)                The riot victim survivors of 2002 communal riots in Gujarat often complained to me that the Union Govt., since May 2004, did not provide, so far, evidence and data, in its possession, regarding duties performed by Army and Central Para Military Forces(CPMF) in Gujarat, during 2002 mass violence for maintenance of law and order, to probe bodies like Justice Nanavati Commission(JNC) and the Special Investigation Team(SIT) headed by Dr. R.K. Raghavan, constituted by the Apex Court.
3)                I had requested the JNC and SIT to collect relevant information and inputs about riots from functionaries of Army and CPMF, who were deployed in Gujarat during 2002 communal disturbances for assisting Gujarat state authorities, through an affidavit dated 03/09/2010. There is no information about these probe bodies procuring relevant data from MOD and MHA, till today. I was also not summoned by these bodies to collect additional information or clarification in this matter.

4)                Therefore I had submitted representations to the Union Defence Minister Shri A. K. Antony and Union Home Minister Shri Sushil Kumar Shinde, requesting them to instruct the concerned authorities in MOD and MHA for presenting germane materials to the JNC and SIT vide my letter dated 27/01/2014. However, there is no response from the Ministers about any follow-up action on my letters. Copies of these letters are enclosed for your kind perusal.

5)                In this respect I humbly request you to issue directions to MOD and MHA for presenting all evidence concerning 2002 Gujarat riots, particularly copies of all reports and extracts of registers and records in their possession, especially, situation reports received from field officers about operational duties performed by Army and CPMF, as part of their functions towards assistance to state police officers, during internal security crisis connected to communal carnage in Gujarat.

6)                The riot victim survivors nurture bitter resentment and unfathomable frustration about Union Govt.’s seemingly inadequate commitment to get the planners and organizers(the Sangh Parivar leaders) and facilitators (those in political and administrative bureaucracy and police, who enabled rioters to perpetrate gruesome crimes on minorities-only two Police Inspectors were found guilty by SIT in its investigation so far), punished as per the imperatives of the Rule of Law.

7)                The acute disillusionment of the riot affected about the failure of Union Govt., since May 2004, to rise to the level of their expectations, true to the letter and spirit of Article-355 of the Constitution of India, emanates out of following factors:-
A)              Failure of the UPA Govt. to appoint a Judicial Commission to enquire into the role of Gujarat Chief Minister, and other seniors in the political and administrative bureaucracy and police in the genesis, course, and aftermath of the riots.(This aspect was not in the terms of reference formulated by the state Govt. for the JNC, as per its Notification dated 06/03/2002). Taking advantage of the lukewarm approach of the Central Govt., the state Govt. had widened the scope and period of probe by the JNC on 20/07/2004 through a notification., forestalling the creation of another probe body.
B)              Delayed response to the Apex Courts’ suggestion regarding entrusting investigation of  major mass violence cases to CBI, on the request of NHRC and NGOs.
C)              Refusal to release copies of correspondence between Shri K. R. Narayanan, the President of  India and Shri Atal Bihari Vajpai, the Prime Minister of India, on Gujarat riots and quality of governance by state Govt. to the JNC.
D)              Refusal to provide copies of MHA’s letters of guidance and situation assessment reports to the state Govt. relating to 2002 riots to the JNC.
E)               Failure to enact a comprehensive law relating to prevention and containment of communal riots, fixing command responsibility of functionaries, mandated to perform duties conscientiously, for achieving purposeful accountability. (Such a legislation was promised to the electorate on the eve of 2004 General Election by UPA).
F)               Refusal to rebuilt even those Medieval Islamic monuments, under the protection of Archaeological Survey of India, demolished by brigands in 2002.
G)              Failure to design and build self – sustaining  and durable infrastructure facilities and amenities for comprehensive relief, rehabilitation and resettlement of riot victim survivors, resulting in many dwelling in sub-human habitats and ghettos, facilitating emergence of  anti-national criminal and extremist gangs in those areas.  

8)      Presentation of evidence related to communal riots, in the reports by functionaries of Army and CPMF to their higher authorities in MOD and MHA, to the JNC would be of immense help to the JNC, in finalizing their exhaustive report on all terms of reference of inquiry, to the state Govt. Such a gesture from the Union Govt. would also largely reduce the sense of  helplessness and disappointment felt by the riot victim survivors and activists struggling for justice delivery in Gujarat. 

          Praying for initiation of expeditious action.


Thanking you.

To,

Respected Dr.Manmohan Singhji,                                                  Yours Faithfully
Hon’ble Prime Minister of India,                      
R. No.-148 B, South Block,                                   
New Delhi-110001                                                
                                                                                                                                                                                             (R.B. Sreekumar)