Thursday, April 4, 2002, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi


M A I N   N E W S

Five burnt alive in Gujarat

The police stands near charred bodies at Ambasana village
The police stands near charred bodies at Ambasana village in Gujarat on Wednesday. — Reuters photo

Ahmedabad, April 3
At least nine persons were today killed, five of them burnt alive and two in police firing, and more than 12 injured in fresh upsurge of communal violence in parts of Gujarat a day ahead of Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee’s visit to the state to take stock of the situation.

Rampaging mobs torched the houses belonging to minority community and burnt alive five persons, including a woman, after locking them in at Abasana village of Ahmedabad district, police sources said.

The police fired on a mob indulging in violence in the curfew-bound area of Gomtipur, killing two persons and wounding three. Eight persons were injured in violence.

In the Madhupura area, one person killed when he was set on fire by a mob, the police said.

In Umreth, a large number of houses and shops were set on fire yesterday. The police opened fire to disperse the arsonists, in which one person was killed and four others injured. Authorities imposed a curfew in the area, the police added.

In Ahmedabad, at least nine persons were injured in last night’s violence in Gomtipur, Kalupur, Dariapur, Saraspur, Saranpur and Astodia (in Khadeia locality), prompting the authorities to clamp curfew from midnight.

Four were injured in police firing on a mob in the Kalupur area, where some houses were set ablaze late last night.

An indefinite curfew was imposed in Ankleshwar industrial town of Bharuch district from 2.30 am today following arson and looting incidents.

Reports from Kheda district said some shops were set on fire in Nadiad town last night prompting the authority to impose curfew in the town.

In Godhra town, the police burst teargas shells to contain a mob that resulted in injuries to a policeman. PTI, UNIBack


Pandemonium in Gujarat House

Gandhinagar, April 3
On a day of pandemonium and repeated disruptions of proceedings, the Gujarat Legislative Assembly was today adjourned sine die after all Opposition Congress members were suspended from the House for stalling proceedings and throwing pamphlets at the Chair to protest government’s ‘failure’ to control violence in the state.

Speaker Dhirubhai Shah had to adjourn the House four times following the pandemonium.

From the start of the day’s proceedings, Congress MLAs raised the issue of unabated violence in the state and shouted anti-government and anti-Speaker slogans.

The House, however, transacted the business of the day despite frequent interruptions by opposition members and passed official bills but without discussion.

The House first suspended seven Congress members on a motion moved by Parliamentary Affairs Minister Suresh Mehta who later moved another motion for similar action against remaining Congress MLAs. Both motions were passed by the House by voice vote. Four independent MLAs and one Janata Dal member walked out of the House following the suspension of Congress MLAs.

Congress members rushed to the well of the House demanding that the government deal with violence sternly and stop killing of innocents, ignoring repeated appeals by the Speaker to allow business go on unhindered.

Leader of the Opposition Naresh Raval and GPCC President Amarsinh Chaudhary, joined by other Congress members, were on their feet and shouting slogans.

The Speaker told the members that he would allow any issue to be raised under rules only. PTIBack


Vajpayee to visit Gujarat today
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 3
Even as incidents of violence continued in the state, Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee is undertaking a visit to the riot-affected areas of Gujarat tomorrow to have a first-hand assessment of the situation there. The Prime Minister has taken keen interest in the visit as he has picked up some of the team members himself, sources said.

A Prime Minister’s aide said Mr Vajpayee would reach Ahmedabad before noon and visit some of the relief camps. He will also hold discussions with Chief Minister Narendra Modi and senior state officials.Back


Citizens Tribunal to probe Gujarat arson
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 3
Citizens for Justice and Peace, a committee set up by Sabrang, a Mumbai-based voluntary organisation, plans to hold a Concerned Citizens Tribunal in Gujarat in mid-April to probe into the incident of arson at Godhra and subsequent violence in the state.

According to a press note issued by Safdar Hashmi Memorial Trust (SAHMAT) here on Wednesday, the Tribunal comprising Mr Justice V.R. Krishna Iyer, Mr Justice P.B. Sawant, Mr Justice Kuldip Singh, Mr Justice Hosbet Suresh and Mr Justice Rajinder Sachar, will lend its ears to aggrieved citizens at four cities for 10 days.

According to the terms of reference, the Concerned Citizens Tribunal will probe into the circumstances leading to the Godhra massacre on February 27 and whether it was pre-planned or guided by a foreign hand. It will also investigate the pattern of mobilisation and arms training by groups.Back


Cong, NCP for Modi’s dismissal
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 3
The Congress today asked the Prime Minister to give Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi “marching orders” following his indictment by the National Human Rights Commission.

Congress chief spokesman S Jaipal Reddy said the commission headed by an eminent jurist had an enormous moral authority. “Now the moral trial of Modi has ended. This is where the trial of Prime Minister begins since he is scheduled to visit Gujarat tomorrow. There are high expectations from the visit of Mr Vajpayee to the troubled state,” Mr Reddy said.

The Nationalist Congress Party also demanded the immediate dismissal of the Modi government in Gujarat. The party also demanded a CBI probe into the communal flare-up in the state. NCP general secretary Tariq Anwar said observations made by the NHRC against the Gujarat Government for its failure to handle the situation had put the government in the dock.Back

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