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News : Archive (September 2003)
  • Good Hindu? Go veg, say Gujarat culture police
    Indo-Asian News Service, Ahmedabad, September 30, 2003
    Now the culture police in this principal city of Gujarat want to dictate what you eat, and that certainly excludes non-vegetarian fare.

    Even as the Gujarat government plans to launch a campaign for vegetarianism on October 2, the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, some people here have started threatening non-vegetarian food outlets with dire consequences.

  • VHP to organise 'Ayodhya March' from Oct 15: Giriraj
    Press Trust of India, September 29, 2003
    In a move to put pressure on the Centre over Ayodhya dispute, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad would organise "Ayodhya March" from October 15 to 17 at New Delhi, Lucknow and Ayodhya.

  • Gujarat files plea seeking retrial in Best Bakery case
    By Manas Dasgupta, The Hindu, September 30, 2003
    AHMEDABAD SEPT. 29. The Gujarat Government today filed a revised and amended petition in the High Court seeking retrial of the Best Bakery case in which all the 21 accused were acquitted by a fast track court.

  • Gujarat riots an aberration: Advani to investors
    Press Trust of India, September 28, 2003
    Describing post-Godhra communal riots in Gujarat as an `aberration', Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani on Sunday asked investors not to be swayed by ‘propaganda’ unleashed by forces at home and abroad against it to sully the state's image and asserted that economic reforms were irreversible.

  • Germans still wary of Gujarat
    PTI, September 28, 2003
    BERLIN: Gujarat and what is perceived here as an emerging threat of 'Hindu fundamentalism' appear to be deterring Germans from investing in India despite the fact that political relations between the two countries saw the highest-level exchanges this year.

  • Mute witness to injustice
    Editorial, The Hindustan Times, September 27, 2003
    The threatening of witnesses in the Gujarat riot cases came to light recently when Zaheera Sheikh pleaded that the high profile Best Bakery matter be tried outside the state for justice to prevail. While her tragic plea became a cause celebre in the country, it has not been sufficiently appreciated that half of the 4,000 cases of murder and mayhem in Gujarat have already been disposed of on the ground that reliable witnesses cannot be found.

  • Gujarat plans blend of culture, business to rebuild image
    Sumeet Chatterjee (IANS),September 26, 2003
    After last year's communal violence put off domestic and overseas investors, Gujarat is all set to launch a major push to rebuild its image as the preferred business destination in India.

  • Gujarat cops under SC scanner
    SC to Gujarat cops: Keep off riot, rape victim until cases decided
    Express News Service, September 26, 2003

    In an unscheduled hearing, the Supreme Court today warned the Gujarat police to ‘‘keep off’’ riot and rape victim Bilkis Yakub Rasool till it decides her plea for transferring her case to the CBI.

  • Sena plans meet at Ayodhya
    By Gargi Parsai, The Hindu, September 26, 2003
    New Delhi Sept. 25. In an effort to upstage the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, the Shiv Sena will convene a `Ram Bhakt Sammelan' at Ayodhya on October 11, six days ahead of a similar meeting organised by the VHP at the same venue to mount pressure for construction of a Ram temple there.

  • `Speak up against injustice'
    By Special Correspondent, The Hindu, September 26, 2003
    NEW DELHI SEPT. 25. "Stand up and be counted" was the message that writer Arundhati Roy, economist Prabhat Patnaik, and human rights activists had for the students and teachers who filled a hall to capacity at the Delhi University today. The only way, they said, to protect India's democracy and its political plurality was to speak up against injustice.

  • Peace with Parivar key, BJP bosses realise
    Smita Gupta, Times News Network, September 21, 2003
    NEW DELHI: Though belated, BJP President M Venkaiah Naidu’s statement that the party will fight the Rae Bareli verdict comes not a day too soon. The BJP appears to have realised that if does not do so, it will alienate the RSS and the VHP whose backing it needs in the run-up not just to the asembly polls later this year, but the general elections in 2004.

  • Best way to tackle terror is to build temple: Sangh’s new Ayodhya line
    NewIndPress, September 23, 2003
    NEW DELHI: What was so far off the record is now on tape and a folder set to be distributed across the country: the Sangh Parivar has linked the fight against terror with the construction of the Ram temple.

  • The truth is out
    Editorial, The Hindustan Times, September 22, 2003
    The culpability of the Narendra Modi government is being exposed with every new revelation before the Supreme Court in the Best Bakery case.

  • Best Bakery: Gujarat admits witnesses coerced
    Press Trust of India, September 19, 2003
    Chastised by the Supreme Court to observe "raj dharma", the Gujarat Government on Friday admitted before it that witnesses in the Best Bakery case trial could have been "coerced or won over" to turn hostile leading to acquittal of all the accused but pledged to do "everything possible" to bring the guilty to book.

  • SC heat makes Gujarat see some light
    DGP says witnesses could have been ‘coerced or won over’
    Prabhakar Rao Voruganti, The Indian Express, September 19, 2003

    In a dramatic climbdown, the Gujarat Government today conceded practically all the prayers made by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) before the Supreme Court to salvage the Best Bakery case.

  • Admits witnesses were coerced
    Times News Network, September 19, 2003
    NEW DELHI: The Gujarat government on Friday revealed the truth behind the acquittal of all accused in the Best Bakery carnage case, in which 21 persons were burnt alive, when it told the Supreme Court that the possibility of witnesses having been "won over or coerced" could not be ruled out.

  • Best Bakery case: SC gives Gujarat 2 weeks to file amended appeal
    Rakesh Bhatnagar, Times News Network, September 19, 2003
    NEW DELHI: The Gujarat government on Friday revealed the truth behind the acquittal of all accused in the Best Bakery carnage case, in which 21 persons were burnt alive, when it told the Supreme Court that the possibility of witnesses having been "won over or coerced" could not be ruled out.

  • Indian Activists Demand Release of Illegal Muslim Detainees
    Kalyani, OneWorld, 18 September 2003
    NEW DELHI, Sept 18 (OneWorld) - Citizens of the western Indian state of Gujarat which was wracked by communal riots last year, are planning to initiate legal action against the unchecked illegal detention of Muslims, which has intensified after a spate of violent incidents this year.

  • VHP threatens 1992-like build-up
    Times News Network, September 18, 2003
    LUCKNOW: The Vishwha Hindu Parishad (VHP) has threatened a 1992-like build-up in Ayodhya on October 17 if the Vajpayee government did not yield to their demand by October 15 for convening special session of the Parliament to pass a legislation for paving way to construction of Ram temple at the disputed site.

  • Ayodhya, a poll remix
    Editorial, The Hindustan Times, September 16, 2003
    Nearly a decade and a half after the BJP first took up the cause of the Ayodhya temple, the party is all set to use it again with elections in mind.

  • VHP stand assailed
    By Special Correspondent, The Hindu, September 17, 2003
    NEW DELHI SEPT. 16. The Vishwa Hindu Parishad announcement of another round of agitation on the Ram temple issue evoked strong reaction from the Opposition even as the Bharatiya Janata Party indicated that it may not be possible to call a special session of Parliament to legislate on the demand.

  • 239 of 240 booked under POTA in Gujarat are Muslims: Report
    Agence France-Presse, September 15, 2003
    All but one of those charged under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA) in Gujarat are Muslims, a report said on Monday.

    Of the 240 people booked under the act, which carries the death penalty, 239 are Muslims while one is a Sikh, a newspaper reported.

    Muslims have been booked for three different attacks on Hindus, including the burning of Sabaramati Express at Godhra last year, the attack on Ahmedabad's Akshardham temple and the murder of former minister Haren Pandya, the report said.

  • Modi's Defining Moment
    Rajdeep Sardesai,, September 16, 2003
    Perhaps, the Gujarat government could have put an end to the story had it strived to provide justice to the victims of the violence. If only it had decided to follow its 'raj dharma' and made sure that every citizen in the state was treated equally under the law, and not further a discriminatory regime, where the Godhra accused are arrested under POTA while the riot accused are let out on bail.

  • Gujarat cops top list of riot atrocities: NCRB
    Express News Service, September 14, 2003
    It's official now. The Gujarat Police — accused of bias and committing atrocities during the riots in the wake of Godhra carnage — had killed the maximum number of civilians, says the latest report of the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).

  • Riot victims seek justice in India
    Top court intervenes in Hindu-Muslim case, bypassing widely criticized state justice system.
    By Scott Baldauf,The Christian Science Monitor, September 15, 2003

    BARODA, INDIA – One of the most brutal hate crimes in recent Indian history may soon get a hearing in India's top court. But as sporadic riots return to the state after months of relative peace, it may be a case of too little, too late.

  • SC stance on Gujarat violence revives victims' hopes
    IANS, September 14, 2003
    NEW DELHI: The law seems to be finally catching up with the perpetrators of the communal carnage in Gujarat, with the Supreme Court severely indicting the State Government for its inability to bring the killers to book.

  • BJP, RSS leaders discuss SCs Gujarat indictment, 13 September, 2003
    New Delhi: Top BJP and RSS leaders today discussed the Supreme Court's strong indictment of the Gujarat Government in the Best Bakery case and its possible impact on the coming assembly elections in four states.

  • Justice eludes Gujarat riot victims
    Anubha Bhonsle, NDTV, September 13, 2003
    While the question everyone's asking is whether yesterday's SC order is cause for some hope, the answer perhaps lies in the stories of people like Zaheera and Bilkis.

  • Punish rioters or quit: SC to Modi Govt
    Press Trust of India, September 12, 2003
    In a scathing attack on the Gujarat government for filing an "eye wash" of an appeal in the Best Bakery riot case, the Supreme Court on Friday doubted the state's intentions on punishing the guilty and observed that it should quit if it cannot punish the rioters.

  • SC slams Modi on riots trial
    Business Standarad Law Correspondent in New Delhi, September 13, 2003
    The Supreme Court today lambasted the Narendra Modi government in Gujarat and its role in the prosecution of the Best Bakery case.

    Chief Justice VN Khare said he had no faith in the prosecution and observed that Gujarat government should quit if the state could not punish the guilty.

  • BJP shows a brave face to hide its Best face
    Modi calls up Dy PM, Venkaiah: It’s ‘legal’, don’t worry
    Pradeep Kaushal, The Indian Express, September 12, 2003

    Although the BJP put up a brave face after the Supreme Court’s scathing remarks today, party sources said that the leadership was clearly rattled by the first ever indictment of the Modi government by the nation’s highest court.

  • Finders keepers?
    Editorial, The Hindustan Times, September 12,2003
    The ‘discovery’ by the Archaeological Survey of India of a temple-like structure beneath the demolished Babri masjid has given a new boost to the BJP’s Hindutva campaign.

  • 12 hurt as communal violence breaks out in 3 Gujarat cities
    Reuters, September 9, 2003
    At least 12 people were injured on Tuesday when Hindus and Muslims clashed during festivities on the last day of Ganesh Chaturthi in Gujarat, police said.

  • SC admits Gujarat plea against bail in Godhra case
    NDTV Correspondent, September 8, 2003
    The Supreme Court today allowed the Gujarat government's appeal challenging the bail granted by the High Court to four accused in the Godhra carnage.

  • SC notice to Gujarat on plea by post-Godhra rape victim
    Press Trust of India, September 8, 2003
    The Supreme Court on Monday issued notices to the Gujarat government, its Home Department and Dahod District Superintendent of Police on a petition filed by a woman from a minority community alleging that police had closed a case pertaining to her rape during the riots in the aftermath of Godhra incident.

  • Gujarat tells SC: No security for riot victims
    NDTV Correspondent, September 7, 2003
    The Gujarat government, in its affidavit to the Supreme Court, said it cannot provide protection to all those deposing before the court in the riots trial.

  • VHP disfavours giving another chance to Vajpayee
    Press Trust of India, September 6, 2003
    Launching a scathing attack on Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, VHP on Saturday disfavoured giving another chance to him while accusing him of "weakening" the country and not having "any sentiments" for Hindus.

  • Stoke the embers
    The Hindustan Times, September 8, 2003
    The outbreak of violence in Godhra has shown how Gujarat remains a communal tinderbox even though the earlier eruption of riots has been brought under control.

  • Telling tone and tenor
    Cussedness again marks the Gujarat govt’s counter affidavit on the riot cases
    The Indian Express, September 6, 2003

    The Modi government could have responded to the Supreme Court’s order in the National Human Rights Commission versus State of Gujarat and Others case, with a modicum of anxiety over the capacity of its criminal justice system to deliver. Not surprisingly, however, it chose to display a characteristic imperviousness to such concerns. The tone and tenor of the counter-affidavit it filed to the NHRC’s Special Leave Petition which had sought, among other things, a retrial of the Best Bakery case outside the state, is revealing.

  • Unifying personal laws
    By V.R. Krishna Iyer, The Hindu, September 6, 2003
    Personal laws may be reformed from within, without a quantum leap into a common code.

    It is true that a common family code for all citizens alike may be a solidarity factor strengthening a sense of fraternity. But national unity is not in peril by the absence of such a code. Nor does the enactment of such a code eliminate religious fumes and divisive feelings.

  • Curfew imposed in Gujarat town
    BBC Online, September 5, 2003
    Authorities in Godhra in the western Indian state of Gujarat have imposed a curfew in some areas following a clash between Hindus and Muslims late on Friday.

    The incident began when a procession by Hindus to celebrate a religious festival - the Ganesh Mahotsava - was passing by a mosque.

  • Temple and the truth
    Critics of the ASI report on Ayodhya place political agenda before the evidence of history
    Bulbul Roy Mishra, Indian Express, September 6, 2003

    Notwithstanding the pressure of a judiciary-set deadline and continued hostility from eminent historians like Irfan Habib and archaeologists like Suraj Bhan, the Archaeological Survey of India’s report on the disputed area in Ayodhya is both self-contained and conclusive.

  • India: Protect Gujarat Activists Now
    Press Release, Human Rights Watch, September 5, 2003
    The Indian government must protect three activists harassed and intimidated for their efforts to protect witnesses to last year's massacres in Gujarat, Human Rights Watch wrote in a letter to the Indian government today.

  • Gujarat says can't comply with SC order on Best Bakery, September 5 2003
    NEW DELHI: The Gujarat government has said it is ``rather impossible to comply fully'' with the Supreme Court's directions to protect witnesses in riot cases in the wake of the Best Bakery controversy.

    In its counter affidavit to the petition filed by the NHRC, the state urged the apex court to modify its order of August 8 as it is ``extremely difficult'' to provide ``full and complete protection'' to the witnesses, their families and relatives.

  • That photo is Ansari’s greatest scar: Family
    Express News Service, September 4, 2003
    Qutubuddin Ansari became known as the face of the Gujarat riots but now his family members just mouth one line: no comment. Not even the RSS weekly Panchjanya comments raising questions on the authenticity of the photograph where he stood with folded hands can provoke them into saying anything. ‘‘We’ve had our share of fame and we don’t want any no more, please.

  • Special court prolongs BJP's Ayodhya anguish
    Times News Network, September 04, 2003
    With the special court in Rae Bareilly trying the Ayodhya demolition case against deputy prime minister L K Advani and others reserving its orders on framing of charges against the accused till September 12, many in the BJP continue to be on the edge of their seat.

  • How genuine is face of Gujarat riots, asks RSS
    Press Trust of India, September 2, 2003
    Stung by a fresh round of publicity to the telling photograph of Qutubiddin Ansari as the face of post-Godhra violence in Gujarat, RSS has questioned the very authenticity of the story behind Ansari with tearful eyes and folded hands begging to be spared.

  • Not a treasure hunt
    Nayanjot Lahiri, September 2, 2003
    For those of us who wish to satisfy our curiosity about the material culture of the various groups who occupied this spot at Ayodhya, there is a lot to be learnt from the report. But for those who are trying to 'fit' archaeological data with the requirements of 'proving' or 'disproving' the historicity of religious figures and of temples constructed in their honour, the report is not likely to be as 'useful' as the current public posturing around it suggests.

  • SC to hear two writs in Best case
    Times News Network, September 02, 2003
    The Supreme Court on Monday said it will hear the petition filed by the Best Bakery case key witness Zahira Sheikh and the petition filed by National Human Rights Commission on the Gujarat riots. In the last hearing, the apex court had converted the NHRC petition seeking retrial in the Best Bakery into a public interest litigation on improving the criminal justice system in India.

  • Gujarat Govt terms NHRC petitions as misconceived
    Press Trust of India, September 1, 2003
    The Gujarat Government on Monday termed as "misconceived" a petition filed by NHRC seeking transfer of Best Bakery, Godhra train carnage and two other riot related cases to a place outside the State for fair trial.

  • Order on Gujarat plea in Godhra case reserved
    PTI, September 2, 2003
    The Supreme Court today reserved its verdict on a Gujarat Government appeal challenging grant of bail to four accused in the Godhra train carnage case on the ground that as POTA had been invoked against them, the High Court had no jurisidiction to entertain their bail pleas.

  • More - Archive (August, 2003)