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Modi may not depose before SIT Sunday
Saturday, March 20, 2010 09:45:14 PM, IANS
Ahmedabad: Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi is not likely to depose before the Special Investigation Team (SIT) Sunday on accusations made by Zakia Jaffri, widow of former Congress MP Ehsan Jaffri killed during the 2002 communal riots.
Beyond an acknowledgement of the notice sent to him, there has been no further response from the chief minister, sources in the SIT said.
SIT chief R.K. Raghavan said: "I am now in Chennai. My coming to Ahmedabad would depend on developments."
The absence of any official communication to the SIT and the presence of its chief in Chennai is indicative that the chief minister is not slated to depose Sunday at least, officials said.
The notice issued to Modi is reported to have sought his deposition in the week beginning Sunday, so for all practical purposes the chief minister would be well within his right to depose any time of his choosing within this period.
Officials said there was every likelihood that he may not depose, choosing to seek more time instead.
The Supreme Court is to hear former BJP legislator Kalu Maliwad's petition questioning the locus standi of the SIT to seek a deposition. The pertition is slated to come up for hearing on April 5.
Highly placed sources here said this opened up the option for the chief minister to seek time for deposition until there is some clarity on the issue. Earlier, the Gujarat High Court had rejected a similar plea of Maliwad.
Zakia's complaint to date is the only document which directly indicts Modi as an accused in 2002 Gujarat riots. The complaint lists 62 other high-profile politicians, bureaucrats and police officials.
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