Panel to supply Godhra riots CD copies to parties concerned

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Ahmedabad, Oct 12 (UNI) The Nanavati-Shah Commission probing into the 2002 Godhra riots in Gujarat has agreed to supply copies of compact disc, containing telephone data pertaining to the riots.

The two-member Commission, comprising Justices G T Nanavati and K G Shah, today agreed to supply copies of the CD, submitted to the Commission by CBI officer Rahul Sharma, to the parties concerned including, the government for analysis.

The Commission asked government counsel Arvind Pandya to collect copies of the CD from it and submit the analysis report by October 30.

In an oral submission before the Commission today, Adv Mukul Sinha, representing the NGO ''Jansangharsh Manch'', urged the Commission to admit the CD data provided by Mr Sharma as secondary evidence in view of the non-availability of the original CD.

The Commission had, on September 29, directed the telephone service providers -- Cellforce and AT&T -- to furnish details of calls made by atleast 40 people, including top police officials and Chief Minister Narendra Modi, during the eight days, beginning February 25, 2002, to check the veracity of the compact disc procured by Rahul Sharma which allegedly contains ''incriminating evidence about the politicians-police-rioteers nexus during the 2002 riots in Gujarat.'' However, the two companies told the Commission that the data sought by the latter was not available with them as their storage period was only for one year.

The Gujarat government, in an affidavit to the Commission, had said it does not possess copies of the CD, which contained data of mobile phone calls made in the state during the 2002 communal riots.

The NGO has contended that the CD was procured by Mr Sharma in his official capacity, when he was assisting the Ahmedabad Crime Branch in investigating two post-Godhra riot cases -- the Naroda Patiya and Gulbarg massacre cases.

UNI

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