That fact that the riots in Gujarat  happened  is undeniable and this is a fact that India has to live with on its conscience just as it has to live with the fact of the burning of the train at Godhra, the ethnic cleansing of Kashmiri Pandits from Kashmir, the demolition of Babri masjid in Ayodhya, the killing of Sikhs in Delhi  and many many other incidents of communal nature that have occured on its soil.

The Gujarat riots were horrific enough but more damaging than the riots are the myths and exaggerations that were spun around it.Some so called social activists (like Teesta Setalvad and her husband Javed) have now been exposed for the vested mileage that they tried to gain out of what was essentially a human tragedy.

Thanks to the very ‘secular’ and ‘unbiased’ nature of our media,especially the television channels, reports such as these are buried under more ‘relevant’stories of the majority community trying to brutalise the minorities.It is this one way reporting and reportings with agenda that is increasingly making the majority community angry and strident in its responses to the ‘secular’ brigade.

Teesta and her husband Javed are supposedly running an organisation that fights communalism!! If this is how they combat communalism then even God can’t save India.The only ray of hope in all this is our judiciary that has not only exposed this farce by Teesta but also ticked off those who tried to give Narendra Modi’s administration a clean chit and a new image by using the exposure of the NGOs that fabricated some stories about the riots.Now only if our politicians and the media could address issues in such a manner without giving everything a communal slant.

I post below a story from Times of India:

   NGOs, Teesta spiced up Gujarat riot incidents: SIT

14 Apr 2009, 1213 hrs IST, Dhananjay Mahapatra, TNN
       
 
 
NEW DELHI: The Special Investigation Team responsible for the arrests of those accused in Gujarat riots has severely censured NGOs and social
 

activist Teesta Setalvad who campaigned for the riot victims.

In a significant development, the SIT led by former CBI director R K Raghavan told the Supreme Court on Monday that the celebrated rights activist cooked up macabre tales of wanton killings.

Many incidents of killings and violence were cooked up, false charges were levelled against then police chief P C Pandey and false witnesses were tutored to give evidence about imaginary incidents, the SIT said in a report submitted before a Bench comprising Justices Arijit Pasayat, P Sathasivam and Aftab Alam.

The SIT said it had been alleged in the Gulbarg Society case that Pandey, instead of taking measures to protect people facing the wrath of rioteers, was helping the mob. The truth was that he was helping with hospitalisation of riot victims and making arrangements for police bandobast, Gujarat counsel, senior advocate Mukul Rohtagi, said quoting from the SIT report.

Rohtagi also said that 22 witnesses, who had submitted identical affidavits before various courts relating to riot incidents, were questioned by the SIT which found that they had been tutored and handed over the affidavits by Setalvad and that they had not actually witnessed the riot incidents.

The SIT also found no truth in the following incidents widely publicised by the NGOs:

* A pregnant Muslim woman Kausar Banu was gangraped by a mob, who then gouged out the foetus with sharp weapons

* Dumping of dead bodies into a well by rioteers at Naroda Patiya

* Police botching up investigation into the killing of British nationals, who were on a visit to Gujarat and unfortunately got caught in the riots

Rohtagi said: “On a reading of the report, it is clear that horrendous allegations made by the NGOs were false. Stereotyped affidavits were supplied by a social activist and the allegations made in them were found untrue.”

Obviously happy with the fresh findings of the SIT which was responsible for the recent arrests of former Gujarat minister Maya Kodanani and VHP leader Jaideep Patel, Rohtagi tried to spruce up the image of the Modi administration, which was castigated in the Best Bakery case by the apex court as “modern day Neros”. He was swiftly told by the Bench that but for the SIT, many more accused, who are freshly added, would not have been brought to book.

The Bench said there was no room for allegations and counter-allegations at this late stage. “In riot cases, the more the delay, there is likelihood of falsity creeping in. So, there should be a designated court to fast track the trials. Riot cases should be given priority because feelings run high having a cascading effect,” it said and asked for suggestions from the Gujarat government, Centre, NGOs and amicus curiae Harish Salve, who said the time had come for the apex court to lift the stay on trials into several post-Godhra riot cases.

While additional solicitor general Gopal Subramaniam agreed with the court that public prosecutors should be selected in consultation with Raghavan, counsel Indira Jaising said there should be a complete regime for protection of witnesses as the same government, which was accused of engineering the riots, was in power now.

Salve said that he would consult Raghavan and let the court know about a witness protection system for post-Godhra riot cases. The court asked the parties to submit their suggestions within a week.

dhananjay.mahapatra@timesgroup.com