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Published On:04 November 2011
Posted by Indian Muslim Observer

INTERVIEW WITH SANJIV BHATT: 'I am privy to a lot of information that transpired in Gujarat during anti-Muslim pogrom in 2002'

[Sanjiv Bhatt, the victimised police officer in Gujarat, says that he is hurling accusations against Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi of complicity in 2002 anti-Muslim riots in the state because he has ample evidence. He says that he was with the state intelligence in 2002 and is privy to a lot of information. Sanjiv Bhatt bares his heart out to our senior colleague and IMO Bureau Chief (Gujarat) Abdul Hafiz Lakhani in a freewheeling interview, in which he says he is a depository of many events that transpired in 2002 during anti-Muslim pogrom in the state. -- Danish Ahmad Khan, Founder-Editor, IndianMuslimObserver.com]

Q: The country hardly knew Sanjiv Bhatt till recently. Suddenly you are everywhere, with several calling you a ‘Singham’. Do you give Chief Minister Narendra Modi credit for this?

A: I would not like to comment on this. These actions are those of a desperate man heading a desperate government; of an autocrat ill-advised by smart bureaucrats who say what he likes to hear. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have got me arrested on frivolous charges.
You have been raising one controversial issue after another.

Q: And your target has been Modi?

A: I have evidence of what I say. I was with the state intelligence in 2002 and am privy to a lot of information. I am a depository of many events that transpired in 2002. I have deposed before the SIT, before the SC amicus curiae and before the Nanavati Commission.

Q: Did you expect your arrest?

A: I was prepared for it. My entire family was prepared for it. We had detached ourselves from the consequences of this fight.

Q: So nothing worried you while you were being arrested?

A: Of course I was worried about my wife and my family. I did not know how my wife Shweta would take it. But she is much stronger mentally and emotionally. My daughter came down from Mumbai and my son was hurt in a fire during protests. All this did worry me.

Q: You said you have evidence in the Haren Pandya case, which you got from the accused when they were lodged in the Sabarmati jail. Was the Haren Pandya case, which is a sensitive issue for the state government, the trigger?

A: A whole lot of things. I was to meet a retired IPS officer and the meeting had been fixed for October 1 over the phone. I was picked up a day before the meeting. I believe the scheduled meeting was the trigger.

Q: Now that you are out, have you rescheduled the meeting?

A: Of course... (laughs).

Q: Of course You were the superintendent Sabarmati jail. And then you became a prisoner there...

A: I felt at home. I had done my bit as the superintendent. I am part of the soul of the jail. When I worked here, I could not sleep at night. I believed there was a lot to be done there.

Q: Was it tough to stay there? Were you treated well?

A: It was not tough at all. I ran, exercised and had home-made food. I read the book Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand, which I had earlier read in 1987 when I was courting Shweta. It is her favourite book and she passed it on to me. I was treated as per norms. I demanded no special treatment and none was given. I want the state government to exhaust all the remedies they have for me.

Q: Where does your battle go from here?

A: It will follow the natural course. I will answer my call of duty. Nothing changes. It just adds to the purpose, to my resolve.

Q: Do you feel victimised by the state government?

A: I am not victimised by any one. The government did what it wanted, and I am doing what I have to do to get justice. It is not a fight against the government, rather it’s my own struggle to get justice and bring the truth out.

Q: What about spying on your family when you were in jail?

A: You know it better than me, as everyone has seen the way the police department acted against me and my family. I am ashamed to be a Gujarat cadre IPS officer and I deeply regret that I have to lead such a police department.

Q: How was your experience inside the jail as an inmate?

A: I was treated well inside the jail and I didn’t have any trouble at all. I maintained my routine of jogging and running in the morning.

Q: Are you aware of the government’s plans to reopen your old cases?

A: I am a police officer, and we are never afraid of cases. It’s been 24 years in the force, so I am fully prepared.

Q: What about K D Panth’s affidavit case?

A: The truth will come out if an independent agency investigates the case.

Q: What are your future plans?

A I don’t have any future plans. It’s an ongoing battle for truth, and I am prepared to face it up front.

[Abdul Hafiz Lakhani is a senior Journalist based at Ahmedabad, Gujarat. He is associated with IndianMuslimObserver.com as Bureau Chief (Gujarat). He can be reached at lakhani63@yahoo.com or on his cell 09228746770]

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Posted by Indian Muslim Observer on November 04, 2011. Filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Feel free to leave a response

By Indian Muslim Observer on November 04, 2011. Filed under , , . Follow any responses to the RSS 2.0. Leave a response

1 comments for "INTERVIEW WITH SANJIV BHATT: 'I am privy to a lot of information that transpired in Gujarat during anti-Muslim pogrom in 2002'"

  1. Farooq Abdul Gaffar Bawani, Rajkot, Gujarat

    I have gone through the interview with Mr. Sanjiv Bhatt. He has revealed the information which he should have revealed in 2002 in other words he should have disclosed Modi's illegal and unconstuitutional orders as soon as meeting was over with CM. He kept silence and obeyed the orders which he was not supposed to obey. Now, he is disclosing all these things after considerable long period of nine years. It seems that something is fishy. Whatever Sanjiv Bhatt is ,he is not a neutral officer. He is responsible and culprit for carrying illegal instructions from above. He should be punished.

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