//Godhra panel urged to probe telephone details

Godhra panel urged to probe telephone details

Ahmedabad: The Jan Sangharsh Manch (JSM), a rights group, Wednesday again urged an inquiry commission to look into details of phone calls made by various leaders around the time of Gujarat’s train tragedy of 2002.

Rahul Sharma, a senior police official, had prepared CDs containing mobile phone numbers and details of phone calls made between Feb 27 – March 4, 2002 in Ahmedabad and Godhra by various leaders.

The rights group had last month filed an application in the commission of Justice (retired) G.T. Nanavati and Justice (retired) K.G. Shah to conduct a probe into the matter of CDs by processing and analysing them.

The state government, in its reply, had called the application "misconceived" and refuted that anything in this regard was on record.

JSM lawyer Mukul Sinha Wednesday submitted to the commission an analysis of the phone calls made from and to Godhra during the period.

A train coach was set on fire in Godhra, 140 km from here, on Feb 27, 2002, killing 59 people, and sparking statewide communal violence.

"The analysis did not reveal any specific pattern of calls that would suggest that the main accused of the Godhra case had participated in or were playing any role to hatch a conspiracy to burn the S-6 coach.

"The accused were in constant touch with the district superintendent of police or the collector after the incident, negating their alleged role as conspirators," said the report prepared by Sinha.

The JSM petition also objected to the allegation made by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) affidavit calling the Godhra incident as a "pre-planned conspiracy sponsored by Pakistan".

"Out of 10 calls made to outside India, none was remotely related to the incident," said Sinha.

"That is why we request the commission to conduct a thorough inquiry into the CDs. This can throw light on what political leaders were doing during the crucial period," he added.

Sinha said the government claim that the CDs were irrelevant was wrong as "the telecom services provided the material on a request made by the police".