Trouble piles up for ‘Terrorist Activist’ Teesta Setalvad

published on September 24, 2010

Gujarat victim sticks more mud on Teesta
Navin Upadhyay | New Delhi – Daily Pioneer

Writes to CJI,seeks probe against NGO

Trouble piles up for social activist Teesta Setalvad in the wake of a riot victim demanding investigation into the activities of her NGO, Citizen for Justice and Peace (CJP), and accusing her of collecting funds in the name of getting them justice.

“I have already sent an affidavit to the Chief Justice of India and others, highlighting how Setalvad and her former close aide Rais Khan Pathan manipulated witnesses to file affidavits on their behalf in the riot cases and subsequently did nothing for them,” Kadri Zahid Hussain, a riot victim, told The Pioneer over phone. “I think that in the name of getting justice for the witnesses, CJP collected funds and made money for itself,” he said, adding that Teesta took him to Delhi, Mumbai and Karnataka and asked him to narrate his story “in front of the media and others”.

On May 28 this year, Kadri — who lost his son in the riots and was arrested by the Gujarat ATS for his suspected involvement in violence — sent an affidavit to the Chief Justice narrating how he came in touch with Setalvad and Rais Khan after his 21-year-old son, Irfan Zahid Hussain Kadri, was killed by BSF personnel in the Rasulabad area of Ahmedabad on May 7, 2002.

Kadri said that when efforts to get justice for his son failed and no one was punished even though the court ordered an inquiry on his complaint, he came in touch with Rais Khan, who introduced him to Setalvad. In his affidavit, Kadri said that after his meeting with Teesta, he gave her all the case documents in the presence of Rais Khan and advocate Tirmizi.

Kadri’s affidavit showed that things changed after he submitted the documents to Setalvad. He was arrested by the Gujarat ATS along with others in the morning of December 9, 2005, from his residence and kept in custody for three days. But Setalvad did nothing except offering lip service, Kadri submitted. “She visited the Gujarat Vidyapeeth in Ahmedabad to attend a Press conference, where many victims were also invited. The event’s CDs were prepared for distribution. I feel that these CDs were prepared to collect funds. I repeatedly approached Rais Khan and inquired about my son’s case. He used to connect me to Setalvad through his phone and she would always promise that she will take my case to the National Human Rights Commission and the Supreme Court. But nothing has happened to date and both Setalvad and Rais Khan have kept me in the dark,” Kadri wrote to the CJI.

“Like me, many other victims of the 2002 Gujarat communal riots must have given affidavits to Setalvad, on the basis of which they must have collected funds. It requires proper investigation. I feel that the Gujarat victims are not getting justice, but they are being subjected to injustice. It seems to be a calculated move to defame Gujarat. I ask the SC as to why my case has not been taken up and who is benefiting from this delay? Such NGOs are playing with the sentiments of victims and doing business… there is a need to take action against them,” Kadri added.

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