Top Gujarat cop Sanjiv Bhatt, who has openly challenged Chief
Minister Narendra Modi by accusing him of wanting to teach Muslims
a "lesson" after the Godhra train attack in 2002, joined the
Indian Police Service (IPS) in 1988 after his post-graduation from
The 47-year-old police officer, who
is currently heading the State Reserve Police Training Centre at
Junagadh, has filed an affidavit in the Supreme Court accusing
Modi, and also casting doubts about the functioning of the Supreme
Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT) into the riots
that followed the Feb 27, 2002 train burning.
Allotted the Gujarat cadre on joining the IPS, Bhatt has served in
various capacities in the state.
From December 1999 to September 2002, he served as deputy
commissioner of intelligence in the State Intelligence Bureau in
His job was to keep tabs on internal security, border and coastal
security and security of vital installations. He was also
entrusted with the security of the chief minister.
In his affidavit, Bhatt clearly stated that it was during this
tenure that he was summoned along with other senior officials and
told to lie low as emotions were running high among Hindus
following the burning of two coaches of the Sabarmati Express at
Godhra, in which 59 Hindus, mostly Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP),
activists were killed. The activists were returning to Gujarat
from Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh.
The train burning led to communal violence that left at least
1,000 people dead across Gujarat.