Sunday, January 8, 2012

Two anti-Modi top cops trade charges

Ahmedabad, Dec 28 (PTI)

Suspended IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt and his one-time senior R B Sreekumar, both part of the anti-Narendra Modi camp, were on Wednesday locked in a war of words over the 2002 post-Godhra riots in Gujarat.

Sreekumar, a former DGP, has alleged that Bhatt maintained silence over the post-Godhra riots due to "ulterior motive" and "for avoiding clash of interests with government".

He slammed the suspended IPS officer in a letter to him, accusing him of "manipulating" and "suppressing" information after the latter on Wednesday accused the former of contradicting his own statements before the Nanavati Commission, which is probing the communal violence.

The verbal duel between the two started when Sreekumar filed an affidavit before the Commission yesterday, raising questions about Bhatt's integrity for speaking up against the Modi government after almost nine years of the riots.

Sreekumar said in 2002 he had asked Bhatt, who was DCP (Intelligence) here during the riots, to file an affidavit before the panel but he had not done so. A similar request by the state DGP in 2004 was also not acted upon by Bhatt.

Reacting to Sreekumar's charge, Bhatt in a letter to the former DGP, accused him of "disregarding" many important information with SIB while filing affidavits before the two- member judicial panel.

Sreekumar has filed eight affidavits before the riot panel over the years, detailing intelligence inputs collected by the State Intelligence Bureau (SIB) that he headed during the 2002 riots.

Bhatt, in his letter, said, "I am a little intrigued and perplexed by the content, tenor and timing the letter."

"Truth is always bitter, painful and naked, and so unpalatable to people who do not stick to it," Sreekumar said in his reply to Bhatt's letter.

"You claimed you were (then) ADGP G C Raiger's staff officer, you were duty bound to file an affidavit... but you deliberately avoided. In my view, you have taken the stand for avoiding any clash of interests with the Government."

"What prevented you from filing an affidavit then?... Similar action was reportedly taken by Shri Rahul Sharma. Does your prolonged silence owes its genesis to some ulterior motive hitherto unknown to people?" Sreekumar sought to know from Bhatt, who earlier this year alleged Modi's complicity in the riots triggered by Godhra train carnage.
Sharma, a senior IPS officer, has been accused of misconduct by Government for not submitting the original CDs having cellphone records related to the riots to respective Investigating Officers or to his supervisory officers.

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