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SIT to challenge Gujarat High Court's bail to Maya Kodnani before Supreme Court

Wednesday, 30 July 2014 - 10:02pm IST | Place: Ahmedabad | Agency: PTI

The Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT), which had probed the 2002 Naroda Patiya riot case, will challenge the Gujarat High Court order granting bail to former Gujarat minister Maya Kodnani.

"We will file an application before Gujarat High Court tomorrow seeking a stay on their order to challenge it before the Supreme Court," Special Public Prosecutor P G Desai of the SIT told PTI.

Kodnani, the former Minister for Women and Child Development in the then Narendra Modi-led Gujarat government, was granted bail today by a division bench of the Gujarat High Court on "medical grounds". 

Desai said that even if the SIT does not get a stay on the Gujarat High Court's order, it could still be challenged in the Supreme Court. "If High Court will not grant a stay on the order, we will move the Supreme Court. We will seek sanction from the Gujarat state government and we will move ahead," Desai said.

SIT has been investigating nine cases related to Godhra and post-Godhra riots where more than a 1,000 people were killed.

Earlier today, a division bench of the Gujarat High Court comprising Justice V M Sahai and Justice R P Dholaria, accepted Kodnani's application seeking bail on "health grounds".

Kodnani is the the first convict to get bail in the Naroda Patiya riots case. She is also the first woman to be convicted in one of the post-Godhra riots cases.

In August 2012, a Special SIT court had awarded life imprisonment to then BJP MLA Maya Kodnani, Bajrang Dal leader Babu Bajrangi and 29 others for their alleged roles in the 2002 riots here at Naroda Patiya, where 97 people were brutally killed. 

Kodnani, MLA of Naroda at the time of 2002 riots, was made minister of state for women and child development in 2007. She had to resign after her arrest in the case in March 2009.

The SIT court in August 2012 awarded life imprisonment to Kodnani, Bajrang Dal leader Babu Bajrangi and 29 others for the riots at Naroda Patiya here.

The massacre had taken place a day after the Godhra train burning incident of February 27, 2002. 

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