ANI Photo | Two SC judges differ on granting interim protection to activist Teesta Setalvad, case referred to CJI

Social activist Teesta Setalvad could not get any relief from the Supreme Court on Saturday as the bench of two judges differed on granting interim protection to her, after she approached the apex court when the Gujarat High Court today rejected her regular bail plea in a case of alleged fabrication of evidence in relation to the 2002 Gujarat riots.
In a special hearing, a bench of Justices Abhay S Oka and Prashant Kumar Mishra, after a brief hearing, said that they have differed in their decision and referred her case to the Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud to place it before a larger bench.
Gujarat High Court had directed Setalvad to surrender immediately. Till now, she was protected against coercive actions because of the Supreme Court’s interim bail order of September 2022.
“There is a disagreement between us on the question of grant of interim protection to her. So, we request the Chief Justice to assign this matter to a larger bench. CJI may be requested to constitute a larger bench at earliest. It is for the CJI to constitute the bench,” Justice Oka said.
At the outset of the hearing, Justice Oka observed that some time should have been granted to her to surrender.
“High Court could have granted (her) some time to surrender? We are not going into the merits right now. On September 22, Supreme Court passed order granting interim bail to her, she is on bail for nine months. We can take the matter on Monday or Tuesday, what’s going to happen in 72 hours?” said Justice Oka.
Solicitor General objected on granting time to Setalvad to surrender. “Please see how entire State was maligned, witnesses led… She has taken entire institution for a ride,” Solicitor General said.
Setalvad was arrested by the Gujarat Police on June 25, 2022, on an FIR by the Ahmedabad Detection of Crime Branch (DCB) on alleged charges of conspiring to falsely implicate innocent people in connection with the 2002 Gujarat riots.
Charges were framed against her under sections 468 (forgery for cheating) and 194 (fabricating false evidence with intent to procure conviction for capital offenses) of the Indian Penal Code. Later on September 2, the Supreme Court granted interim bail to Teesta.
The SIT formed to probe the case has alleged that Setalvad and Sreekumar were part of a larger conspiracy carried out at the behest of late Congress leader Ahmed Patel to destabilise the then Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government led by Narendra Modi, who was the Chief Minister of Gujarat at the time. Former IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt is also an accused in the case.
The FIR against Setalvad, Sreekumar, and Bhatt was registered after the Supreme Court had on June 24, dismissed the plea filed by Zakia Jafri, widow of former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri, challenging the clean chit given by the SIT to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and several others in 2002 Gujarat riots.
Ehsan Jafri was among 69 people killed during the violence at Gulberg Society in Ahmedabad on February 28, 2002. Zakia Jafri has challenged the SIT’s clean chit to 64 people including Narendra Modi who was the Gujarat Chief Minister during the riots in the State.
She had alleged a “larger conspiracy” behind the post-Godhra incident riots. However, the SIT in the apex court had opposed the plea of Jafri saying there is a sinister plot behind the complaint to probe the “larger conspiracy” behind the 2002 Gujarat riots and the original complaint by Jafri was directed by Teesta Setalvad, who leveled allegations just to keep the pot boiling

Subscribe to our Newsletter

ANI News Logo
About ANI


ANI is a leading multimedia news agency.


Impact of COVID-19 far from over as families in China still grapple with trauma from previous waves

Maharashtra: Fire breaks out at godown in Mumbai’s Kurla