US govt report talks of Amit Jethva murder

Lens also on Nanavati panel.

In its recent report concerning human rights, the United States' State Department has taken note of the Amit Jethva murder case as well as the 18th extension given to Nanavati-Mehta Commission probing the 2002 riots.

"On February 28, the government of Gujarat submitted an affidavit stating that a government probe did not find incriminating evidence against Dinu Solanki, a BJP member of Parliament from Junagadh accused of planning and ordering the killing. On March 16, a chargesheet on the case was filed, but the contents were not released, leaving the identity of the accused unknown," the report says.

It also talks about the progress in the 2002 riots cases. "On June 30, a court convicted M K Patel for 'dereliction of duty' when he served as a police inspector during the 2002 riots... Patel was the first police officer to be convicted... Besides Patel, the designated fast-track court in Mehsana sentenced 21 police officers to life imprisonment in July.

"In August a special court in Gujarat convicted 32 persons, including former BJP state cabinet minister Mayaben Kodnani and Bajrang Dal leader Babu Bajrangi, for the massacre of 97 persons in the Naroda Patiya area during the riots," the report adds, citing judgments in the Ode and Best Bakery riots cases.

Citing a 2012 survey by an NGO, the report says it showed "16,087 persons of the approximately 250,000 displaced in the 2002 Gujarat violence remained in camps, living in 83 relief colonies that lacked adequate infrastructure and security".

Taking note of several extensions given to the Nanavati-Mehta Commission, the report says: "The Gujarat government appointed the Nanavati-Mehta Commission to investigate the 2002 violence. On March 30, the commission received its 18th extension; the new deadline for submission of its final report was December 31, but the deadline passed with no submission."

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