Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 7

The Council for International Affairs and Human Rights is deeply concerned over the Godhra

carnage that consumedIt is a gross violation of human rights of innocent citizens who were
roasted alive or brutally killed or maimed for no fault of theirs.
58 pilgrims, including 26 women and 12 children
The team left for Gujarat on April 1 and returned on April 7, 2002.

The Council is extremely grateful to Justice Tewatia and his team for conducting the study and
producing a comprehensive report.

ADMINISTRATIVE RESPONSE
Based on the information collected from official and non-official sources at Godhra, Ahemdabad
and Vadodara the Study Team is of the considered opinion that:
1. The local administration did not respond with speed to the Godhra carnage. The police
remained a passive spectator and hesitated to use force against the miscreants. It made no attempt
to apprehend the leaders of the mob that indulged in burning alive innocent pilgrims returning
from Ayodhya. However, the administration took preventive measures after the VHP gave a call
for Gujarat bandh in protest against the attack on the train.
2. In Godhra, Vadodara and Ahmedabad the police tried to control the rioting mobs but, more
often than not, failed, as the police were outnumbered the mobs were unexpectedly large and
the police were inadequately armed. In certain cases, the mob carried more lethal weapons
that the police had.
3. The administration was not prepared to handle massive migration of riot affected people of
both the communities and did not have any idea of the quantum of the relief and rehabilitation
work required.
4. Co-ordination between the administration and the NGOs was inadequate.
5. Training and drills for managing communal tensions was conspicuous by its absence in a state
that periodically witnesses communal frenzy.
6. Socio-psychological understanding of the communal divide is lacking amongst the officials.
7. The adverse comments on the transfers of officials in the media and not so much the actual
transfers demotivated the official machinery.

8. At many places policemen did commendable work of protecting life and property.
9. Policemen, by and large, responded to the situation without communal bias.
DEPLOYMENT OF ARMY
There has been lot of comments on the timing of the deployment of army in various urban and
rural areas in Gujarat after the outbreak of violence. Although the team did not have enough time
to go into the question in depth, the information made available to it shows that there was no
delay on the part of the Gujarat Government in summoning and deployment of troops. A
comparison with the past is presented for a proper perspective.
RELIEF AND REHABILITATION MEASURES
1. Many persons of both the communities whose houses were burnt or destroyed fled and came
to the nearby towns for shelter.
2. Many persons who feared an attack on them also fled and gathered in nearby towns.
3. The State Government arranged for shelters called Relief Camps to provide safe temporary
shelter to the displaced persons.
4. Many voluntary organizations of both the communities also opened Relief Camps for the
displaced persons.
5. The Government managed some camps while other camps were run by the voluntary
organizations.
6. Most of the inhabitants in the camps remained unoccupied, leading to idle talk and further
reinforcement of views on communal basis.
7. The inhabitants did not feel confident and safe to go back to their respective habitations.
SOCIO-ECONOMIC PROFILES OF THE RIOTING MOBS
(Based on information collected from officials and public, no direct observation)
1. Muslim mobs predominantly included persons of lower socio-economic strata.
2. Muslim mobs included many known faces but number of persons not earlier seen in the
locality was also very large.
3. Hindu mobs, especially during the first week of March, comprised a mix of people belonging
to lower, lower middle and upper middle socio-economic strata of the society.

4. Involvement of upper middle class Hindus in arson and looting is a phenomenon seen for the
first time in the country.
5. The Hindu mobs appeared to be more interested in destroying the property of selected
establishments of Muslims. It was reported that a chain of restaurants with Hindu names and
owned by a Muslim family was targeted because of the perception that lot of money from gulf
countries had been invested thereby putting Hindu competitors at a disadvantage.
6. Another new phenomenon reported to the Study Team was the presence and active
participation of women in the mobs.
INVOLVEMENT OF TRIBALS
Earlier in Gujarat, tribals never got involved in the Hindu- Muslim riots. However, their
involvement in post Godhra riots added a new dimension to the communal violence. In rural
areas the vanvasis attacked the Muslim moneylenders, shopkeepers and the forest contractors.
They used their traditional bow and arrows as also their implements used to cut the trees and
grass while attacking Muslims. They moved in groups and used coded signals for
communication.
Two factors seems to have contributed to this disturbing phenomenon:
1. A delegation of tribals told the Study team that the Muslim moneylenders, shopkeepers and
forest contractors have been exploiting the tribals for decades. They charged exorbitant rate of
interest to money loaned to tribals. In certain cases the rate of interest is as high as 50 per cent
per year.
Having got into this never-ending vicious circle of loans, the tribals have been reduced to the
status of bonded labour. Tribals working as servants are ill-treated by these money lenders who
happen to be Muslims.
The accumulated anger of years of exploitation became explosive when moneylenders
sexually exploited their womenfolk. The tribals are no longer allowed to use forest produce
that has been their sustenance for centuries. This too fuelled the feelings of anger, hatred
and revenge among them.
2. Tribals have, of late, become conscious of their Hindu identity because of the awareness
campaign launched by VHP and other Hindu outfits. Burning alive of Hindu pilgrims by a
Muslim mob at Godhra provided the spark for the fire of revenge and hatred.
It may be mentioned that these are only exploratory postulations, scientific anthropological,
economic and sociological analysis is required to understand the changed behavior of tribals.
CONCLUSIONS
TERRORISM NURTURED BY COMMUNAL DISHARMONY:

The Godhra carnage and related incidents make a typical case study of international designs and
conspiracies to weaken India as an emerging world power. Analysts and professional strategists
of all ideological inclinations converge on one forecast that India is going to be a major player on
the international scene sooner rather than later.
The global community also realizes the inevitability of India becoming an important economic
and military power. In such a situation it is but natural that nations hostile to India or its
adversaries make all out efforts to create impediments in this process.
Their strategy is to keep India engaged in communal and caste strife so that the nations focus on
development is defused and its endeavour to emerge as a super- power is thwarted. It would
surprise no one if Pakistan with the tacit support of not-so-friendly neighbours and world powers
hatches conspiracies to destablise and weaken the Indian State.
A careful and in-depth analysis, if carried out with an open mind, would throw open an action
plans where terrorist activities appear to be merging with the already existing strong antagonism
between Muslims and Hindus. Our hostile neighbour, sometimes in the guise of a friend, keeps
on creating wounds on the body polity of our nation.
Creation and perpetuation of Kashmir problem is one such example. The support to the
authoritarian regimes in Pakistan by USA and European countries speaks volumes about the
super powers commitment, or lack of it, to democratic values. Godhra and the wide spread
communal violence in Gujarat in recent weeks is a part of this nefarious design.
The Study Team concludes:
1. Burning of 58 Hindu pilgrims at Godhra on 27.02.02 was an act of international terrorism
carried out with the evil objective of pushing the country into a communal cauldron.
2. The plan was to burn the entire train with more than two thousand passengers in the wee hours
of February 27, 2002. It was a terrorist action plan that partly failed. The perpetrators of the
terrorist acts received support from jehadi elements operating from Godhra. These included some
Congress members of the Nagarpalika.
1. Preparations for enacting Godhra carnage were made in advance.
2. There were no quarrels or fights between Hindus and Muslim passengers on the train.
3. There were no quarrels or fights between the vendors and the Hindu pilgrims on the platform
of Godhra Railway Station.
4. The intention of the mob was to put to death all the pilgrims travelling by the Sabharmati
Express.

5. The fire fighting system available in Godhra was weakened and its arrival at the place of
incident wilfully delayed by the mob with the open participation of a Congress Councillor, Haji
Balal.
6. The demographic changes in Godhra in recent years have made it a centre for jehadi activities.
7. The Army was requisitioned and deployed in time.
8. The police was on many occasions overwhelmed by the rioting mobs that were massive
and carried more lethal weapons than the police did.
9. Police did not have the training and know-how to mange situations of communal strife
witnessed in the state in recent weeks.
10. Barring a few exceptions, the police was not found to be communally motivated.
11. Frequent deployment of army for internal management weakens the defence of our
international borders and facilitates infiltration from across the border.
12. The local administration and police at Godhra did not take adequate and prompt action even
after the receipt of information about the attack on the train by an armed mob. The local police
was reluctant to use force against the rioting mob and made no attempt to arrest the leaders of the
gang.
13. The local administration and the police should have been on the alert in view of the
demographic and political changes taking place in the town.
15. The administration in Godhra, Ahmedabad and Vadodra was on the whole sensitized to the
plight of Muslim minorities in their respective areas. However, the police failed to protect the
citizens from frenzied mobs indulging in arson, looting and killing.
16. The relief work was carried out by establishing relief camps for victims of the riots. There are
separate camps for Hindus and Muslims. Refugees are not satisfied with the facilities available in
the camps.
17. Riot-affected citizens belonging to both the communities are reluctant to go back to their
homes due to communal tension and apprehensions about violence.
18. Although Gujarat is a state notorious for communal riots, the bureaucracy and the police are
not trained to handle communal riots and to take pre-emptive action to prevent sectarian
violence.
19. Alternate strategies to mange communal divide have not been worked out.
20. Adverse media reports about role of officials affected their performance and de-motivated
them. Several officers were reluctant to take firm action.

21. Gujarati language media was factual and objective. Yet its propensity to highlight the gory
incidents in great details heightened communal tension.
22. English language media, particularly the Delhi Press, is perceived by the Gujaratis to be
biased. The information disseminated by it was neither balanced nor impartial.
23. By converting half-baked news stories into major headlines, print as well as electronic media
widened the psychological hiatus between Muslims and Hindus.
24. By disseminating half-truths and lies, the media played no mean role in distorting countrys
image in the World.
25. The credibility of the media both electronic and print is at dangerously low ebb in Gujarat.
The sectarian violence in Gujarat that began in Godhra on 27.02.02 can be divided into four
phases:
1. The first phase was Godhra incident which was planned and executed by a combination of
external and internal jehadi forces. It lasted for less than an hour.
2. The second phase was the reaction of Godhra where Hindu pilgrims were roasted alive in the
train. The backlash was very intense for 3-4 days. However, sporadic incidents continued for
several weeks.
3. The third phase began on 15.03.02 after a Muslim mob attacked a Hindu procession chanting
Ram dhun. Extensive media coverage of this attack provoked yet another round of communal
riots that lasted for 4/5 days.
4. Sectarian violence continues even more than a month after Godhra. This fourth phase of
violence has no provocation or justification other than to sustain the Remove Modi campaign.
It is the constitutional duty of the State Government to protect citizens and maintain law and
order.
It is also in the partisan interest of the ruling party in the state to put an end to the
communal violence as its continuity in office depends on how soon and how effectively it
combats violence. It is, therefore, hard to reject Chief Ministers contention that the
Congress party that has a vested interest in getting him sacked is perpetuating the
communal violence by provoking stray incidents.
Thus the Study Team concludes:
26. Communal violence in Gujarat has become politicized, and instead of treating it as human
tragedy it is being used to get political mileage by political parties.
27. Loaded statements made by political leaders propounding their action plans increases the
hiatus between Muslims and Hindus.

28. Continued communal violence in Gujarat has tarnished the image of the country in
international field thereby reducing its status and bargaining power. Western countries jealous of
Indias growing clout in the international community have used the riots to interfere in our
internal affairs. The Centre has taken some steps to stem the rot but the role of the opposition is
negative. It is encouraging Muslim outfits to involve foreign powers in their oust Mody
campaign.
29. On the world canvass today strong indicators are visible that point to a concerted effort by
jehadi forces to slow down ever- increasing importance of India in the world affairs.
30. There are also concerted efforts to disintegrate India, politically as well as emotionally.
31. There are elements within the country that help and collaborate with the forces inimical to
India.
32. The governing class in India is ignorant or wilfully blind to the threat perceptions posed by
the jehadi forces.