Officials from the Gujarat Crime Branch detained activist-journalist Teesta Setalvad on Saturday, 25 June, hours after Home Minister Amit Shah said in an interview that her NGO had spread "baseless" information regarding the 2002 Gujarat riots. She has now been taken to Ahmedabad.
The officials arrived at her residence at 3 pm in the afternoon. Setalvad was then taken to the Santacruz police station.
An FIR naming Setalvad, Sanjiv Rajendra Bhatt, and RB Sreekumar was filed at the DCB police station under Sections 468, 471, 194, 211, 218, 120B of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
Setalvad, Bhatt, and Shreekumar have been charged with forgery, fabricating evidence, and criminal conspiracy.
Shreekumar has also been detained in the case.
Following Teesta's detention, BJP's national spokesperson claimed that Setalvad had "deliberately created a false story."
He added, "This has been strongly remarked by the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court has taken Teesta Setalvad's in its judgment."
What Did Amit Shah Say?
"I have read the judgment very carefully. The judgment clearly mentions the name of Teesta Setalvad. The NGO that was run being run by her – I don’t remember the name of the NGO – had given baseless information about the riots to the police," Shah had said in an interview with news agency ANI.
Shah's comments came after the Supreme Court upheld the magistrate's decision to accept the final report submitted by the SIT in the Gujarat riots case, claiming that the appeal filed by Zakia Jafri was "devoid of merits."
Zakia is the widow of Ehsan Jafri, a Congress MP who was killed in the Gulbarg Society massacre during the riots.
There is also a case of alleged violation of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) against the activist. The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had filed a case against Setalvad in 2015, in which it had claimed that she had received funds from abroad in connection with a campaign for the 2002 Gujarat riot victims without the Home Ministry's approval.
Shah also said in the interview that Setalvad had "exploited" the emotions of Zakia in connection with the case.
"The Supreme Court said that Zakia Jafri worked on someone else's instructions. The NGO signed affidavits of several victims and they didn't even know. Everyone knows Teesta Setalvad's NGO was doing this. When the UPA (United Progressive Alliance) government came to power at that time, it helped the NGO," he said.
(With inputs from ANI.)
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