April 26, 02
to the Survivors
Naroda Gaon and
Naroda Patiya and
Naroda Gaon have a long story of VHP provocation. Police sources
revealed to CC that in 1999 a dargah was broken down
and an idol installed in its place. At the time, the local police
repaired the dargah and arrested 10-15 persons, including Dr.
Jaideep Patel, Maya Kotdani and Amrish Pandey. Pressure was mounted
by the then home minister, Haren Pandya, but the police stood their
ground and the law-breakers backed down.*
at Relief Camp on March 20)
Thursday to Monday (February 28-March 4), I remained hidden in the
locality. I hid inside the SRP quarters along with seven children of
the locality. My whole family was scattered here and there. My
two-year-old son was with my mother-in-law and I found them later.
Before escaping to
the SRP quarters, I witnessed Kausar Bano being brutally raped in
the Javan Nagar Maidan. Her stomach was carved opened, her baby
flung into the fire before she was sexually abused, cut up and
The attack was
spearheaded from Gopinath society and Gangotri society. Mumtaz Bano
was another victim. Other women who were similarly brutalized and
killed were Ayesha Bibi, Shaheen Bano, Noorjahan, Najma Begum, Hasan
Ali, Zainab Bano, Noorjahan Alori and Sufia Bano. I also saw Sadiq
Salim Sheikh being killed brutally, his head smashed with an iron
(assailants): Residents of
Gangotri and Gopinath housing societies.
Jaideep Patel (second in rank to Praveen Togadia of the VHP), for
leading the mob.
son of Mukesh Jiwanlal Banya
son of Bavani Singh
driver, Mungna Chara
of Manoj Video Pvt. Firm
Panchal Sindhi, owner, Uday Gas Agency
Chara and owner of Manoj Video were the rapists.
Shahibag Relief Camp
at Shahibag Relief Camp on March 20)
have only a brother, a sister and my father who is quite old left
now. My mother Jerina and my other sister Nasreen were stabbed,
burnt and killed. I saw it all happening. My sister does not stop
crying, my father does not speak. I only know that those Hindus were
attacking Muslims. I saw it all happen.
The previous day
we were told that some trouble might happen. When nothing happened
at night, we thought it was just a rumour and went back thinking
that nothing might happen. In the morning, a crowd started pelting
stones. We ran towards Gangotri and Gopinath society but it was
residents from these societies who got the tolas (crowds)
While I stood on a
wall, I saw my mother and sister being stabbed. Then they sprinkled
kerosene on both and burned them alive. I was so shocked I fell
down. When I got up a man hit me on the chest and on the abdomen.
even said, “Chop his head off”. But an elderly person in the
group said, “Do not kill the child.” Though others argued, he
told me to run away. He said, “Bhag ja beta (“Run away,
son).” I ran. I still remember the face of the old man.
had to stay inside a small shed with another woman and through a
tiny entrance we watched these people kill. Later, I crawled quietly
into one of the SRP quarters and found my aunt there. I lived there
for three days. My whole family had been separated.
I was taken to the Shahibag relief camp where my sister, who is here
with me now, had come looking for me from the Shah Alam camp.
(assailants): Residents of
Gangotri and Gopinath housing societies.
Society, Chamanpura, Ahmedabad
7.30 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. on Thursday, February 28 a 20-25,000-strong
mob surrounded the Chamanpura area in the heart of Ahmedabad city.
The FIR lodged by KG Erda of the Meghani Nagar police station (Communalism
Combat has a copy) gives a blow-by-blow account of the utter
failure of the police to put off the assailants and protect the
FIR admits that the arson and destruction began from the morning
itself. What is not contained in the FIR, but a fact to which an
eyewitness survivor and two Yuva Congress members are witness, is
that the commissioner of police, Ahmedabad, PC Pandey visited Ehsan
Jaffri at 10.30 a.m. sharp and assured him of police
CP stands directly indicted as he did not keep his promise of
sending police help. The few men who were deputed from the Meghani
Nagar chowky merely watched as 70 persons were butchered and burned.
The 10-12 women among the victims were brutally gang raped. The
centre of an Indian commercial city saw a medieval and macabre dance
of death, humiliation and revenge heaped on women, children and men.
Shareifbhai Nasiruddin Sheikh,
Witness: Mohammmed Shareifbhai Nasiruddin Sheikh
at Ahmedabad on March 9 )
Testimony: Sharief Bhai is a survivor of the Chamanpura mass arson. He lost his wife, Nasreen and two daughters. The owner of a prosperous electronic business, he could have escaped with his family but he was at the forefront, along with young men, warding of the murderous attack.
Today, he and his son Sahil (10) are the sole survivors of his family. When I met him on March 24, he told me that he had not cried so far. Justice even if it is a long and arduous fight, is what he seeks and is willing to fight for.
, GENOCIDE—GUJARAT 2002,Communalism Combat Report)
an area located on the outskirts of Ahmedabad, saw repeated and
prolonged bouts of violence, led often by the residents of the
nearby housing colonies like Murlidhar Society, Mani Society,
Asapalav Society, Picnic Park and Manav Nagar. The attacks were
allegedly led by a resident of Vatwa who is also a Bajrang Dal
leader – Haresh Patel. Patel was ably supported by the police.
Nawapura-Kabrastan, a basti of 300 houses, was completely
gutted by mobs that attacked all day and night. The attack came from
the residents of Aspalav, Picnic Park, Manav Nagar housing colonies.
There were many persons from the Waghari community involved in the
Muslim homes were burnt down in the following localites: Bachubhai
Kua (70-80 houses), Bismillah Nagar (60 house), Darbar Khetar (70-80
houses), Syedwadi (150 houses), Azim Park (100 houses); Muchadipir
(9 houses); Roshni Raos (105 houses).
attacks continued from February 28-March 2 in the first instance and
terror generated was relentless until the middle of March. Finally
again on April 5, policemen unleashed terror on the whole locality
cloaking their faces under the helmets. “Police chor-dakoo ho
gayee hai” is the refrain of residents. Forty young men from
the targetted minority have been arrested in selective combing
operations by the police.
.34 , GENOCIDE—GUJARAT 2002,Communalism Combat Report)
in 1932. During the 1969 riots there was no problem in this area. In
1990, there was some disturbance, one member from a family living in
Delite Apartments was burnt alive. ‘Wahi log aaj bhi kam kar rahe
hain’ (‘The same people are up to similar deeds now’.
Pandya is elected from this constituency (Ellis Bridge). During his
campaign for the last elections he was openly campaigning saying,
‘Paldi se musalman ka naam aur nishan mita denge’ (‘We’ll
wipe out any trace of Muslim presence from the Paldi area’).
writer spoke to two couples from the Paldi area -- Aftab Bhai and
Ghizala Kadri (the latter works at the Oriental Insurance near Lal
Darwaza Ahmedabad) and Ayaz and Wasim Aslam (employed by the
Ahmedabad Municipal Transport Service) on March 9.
the couples are residents of Kazmi Apartments, Paldi, Flat No. 3 and
4 respectively. Justice AN Divecha (retired judge of the Gujarat
High Court) lives in Flat 1 & 2 of the same apartment and is a
neighbour. Besides being victims themselves, they are eyewitnesses
to what happened to justice Divecha.
Kazmi Apartments, Paldi, Ahmedabad
Aftab Kadri and Ghizala Kadri
at Jamalpur on March 9)
, GENOCIDE—GUJARAT 2002,Communalism Combat Report)
On the night of February
28, some 25-30 petrol bombs were thrown inside our flats from
outside. When we looked out to see who the assailants were, we
recognized them as VHP people from the area. We rang up 100 (Police
control) and spoke to DCP Pargi who sent a PI and PSI to check on
the damage. We were asking for protection because though only the
walls were damaged, the intention of the attackers was clear.
Birja who inspected the damage said it was not enough to warrant any
police protection. The next morning at about 11.30 a.m., a mob of
50-60 persons hurled stones and broke the windowpanes of flat number
3. We called police control again. In the mob, we could spot some of
the known faces we had seen the day before. We wondered what to do
but I (Aftab Kadri) felt leaving our home may not be a good idea.
our building, Kazmi Apartments, there are 12 flats, all belonging to
Muslims. By the morning of 28th there were only 10-12 of
us around. Some were out of town and others had left. We sent off
our families elsewhere and I spent whole of 28th watching
a 2,500-3,000 strong mob wreck havoc in the area.
first attacked Tarana Apartments. They were armed with baseball
bats, hockey sticks and cricket bats. They used to use the force of
3,000 persons to break down a strong gate. They were travelling in
Sumo vans. They broke the locks of 12 flats at Tarana Apartments,
looted and burnt them.
second building to be attacked was Delite Apartments. They used
Pepsi bottles to create the impact of home bombs. They used chemical
solvents to ensure that once a fire starts it does not stop.
third building to be attacked was Elite Apartments where mostly
advocates live. The fourth building was our building, Kazmi
Apartments. Justice Divecha left in the dead of night, at 12 p.m. My
family had left the day before. In my case, I suffered a loss of Rs
(assailants): VHP leaders
and activists from Paldi.
(police): DCP Pargi, PSI
of Paldi/Eyewitness to Gujarat Revenue Minister Haren Pandya
inciting Mobs to Violence;
has been threatened TWICE since for daring to identify the accused.
“It was February 28. The time was 1.45 p.m. I saw a mob gathering. Within minutes I then saw Haren Pandya who has won the assembly election from our constituency come to the corner of the street where the building where we we live at Tarana Apartments and start making gestures with his hands that appeared to say “come on start the work.” When a mob gets encouragement from a leader, it gets courage. And that is when the destruction began. The gate was broken. Vehicles on the way were destroyed. Then they attacked the Tarana Apartments; the first floor and second floor was attacked and set fire to. The Police were in a jeep walking along with the crowd and did not even step out. The policemen were talking to the crowd.
My wife even asked me to ask the police for help but I told her how could I expect any help from the police? My house in Tarana was looted thrice after that I went to the police to register my FIR naming the minister which they refused. Thereafter I have registered my statement with my lawyer that has been sent to the police. I have received threats saying “ You named Pandya. We have burned your homes. Next we will burn you.” You cannot imagine the threats that we live under.”
Visnagar, Mehsana Distr
Arif Khan Yakub Khan (13)
Yakoob Khan (11)
father, mother, Dadi were all cut up and burned. It was the 28th
of February. We were all in the house. When the mob attacked, my
father managed to get me and Norrjehan and me out of the house and
force us to run ahead. My mother was left inside. My father forced
us to run ahead. But they caught him. They asked him to say ‘Jai
Sri Ram.’ He refused. In front of my eyes, they c ut him up and
burned him. When I returned to the house I found a heap of persons
Yusuf Khan Pathan: Totally eleven members of our families brutally
lossed their lives. My wife, two girls, son too. I was busy
defending us since we are located in the midst of the Patel
I have identified the accused as Daya Purushottam, Babubhai Puruhottam, Ramesh Daya Madhabar but it is the MLA, Prahlad Ghosa supplied arms. The DSP earlier Gahlot was helpful in trying to locate the bodies of our near and dead ones. Therefore in vengeance, CM Narendra Modi transferred him out and brought AK Sharma in his place who is close to him from Rajkot.
2002,Communalism Combat Report)
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