On 6 October 2018, The Indian Express reported some claims of retired Lt. Gen Zameer Uddin Shah on happenings of 1 March 2002 in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. The report said:
”On the intervening night of February 28 and March 1, 2002 when Gujarat was engulfed in flames, Lt. Gen Zameer Uddin Shah, met the then Chief Minister Narendra Modi, in the presence of the then Defence Minister George Fernandes, at 2 am in Ahmedabad and gave him a list of immediate requirements to enable the Army columns to fan out to restore law and order.
But the 3,000 troops that had landed at the Ahmedabad airfield at 7 am on March 1, had to wait for a day before the Gujarat administration provided the transport– during which period hundreds of people were killed. “These were crucial hours lost,” Shah, who retired as the Deputy Chief of Army Staff, has revealed in his upcoming memoir titled “The Sarkari Mussalman” to be launched by former Vice President Hamid Ansari on October 13 at India International Centre here [New Delhi].
In the memoir, a copy of which is with IANS, Shah writes that the Gujarat government requested for deployment of the Army through the Union Home Ministry and the Ministry of Defence on February 28, 2002.
The then Chief of Army Staff, General S. Padmanabhan was quoted by him as saying: “‘Zoom, get your formation to Gujarat tonight and quell the riots.’ I replied, ‘Sir, the road move will take us two days.’ He shot back, ‘The Air Force will take care of your move from Jodhpur. Get maximum troops to the airfield. Speed and resolute action are the need of the hour.'”
Upon arriving at the “dark and deserted” Ahmedabad airfield, he enquired: “Where are the vehicles and other logistic support we had been promised?” He learnt that the state government was still “making the necessary arrangements”.
“The crucial periods was the night of 28th February and the 1st of March. This is when the maximum damage was done. I met the chief minister at 2 am on the 1st morning. The troops sat on the airfield all through the 1st of March and we got the transport only on the 2nd of March. By then the mayhem had already been done,” Shah, who has been conferred Param Vishisht Seva Medal, Vishisht Seva Medal and Sena Medal for his services to the armed forces, told IANS.
Asked if the damage would be lesser had the army been allowed full freedom and provided with what he had personally asked Modi for, he agreed and said: “Most certainly the damage would have been much, much less had we got the vehicles at the right time. What the police couldn’t do in six days we did in 48 hours despite being six times smaller in size than them. We finished the operation in 48 hours on the 4th of March but it could have been finished on the 2nd of March itself had we not lost those crucial hours.”
He said that he is not blaming anyone in particular. “It may take some time in arranging transport but in a situation like that, it could have possibly been done faster,” he added.
He said the police were “dumb bystanders” while the “mob was setting fire on streets and houses”. They were taking “no action” to prevent the “mayhem” that was being done.
“I did see a lot of MLAs from the majority community sitting at the police stations. They had no business to be there. Whenever we used to tell the police to impose the curfew, they never did so in the minority areas. So the minorities were always surrounded by the mobs. It was a totally parochial and biased handling,” the decorated army veteran maintained…
The government had told the parliament in 2005 that 790 Muslims and 254 Hindus were killed, 223 more people reported missing and another 2,500 injured during the 2002 riots in Gujarat. Shah maintains in the book that the “official figures of deaths and damage do not reflect a true picture of the actual extent of the carnage”.
After this, some anti-BJP journalists like Hartosh Singh Bal supported these claims (as expected) and attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi and held him guilty. So did Congress leaders like Manish Tiwari.
Unfortunately, this is not even a manoeuvre, these are plain lies. A factory of lies. The Godhra massacre of 59 Ram sewaks took place on 27 February 2002 (Wednesday). The riots after that began on 28 February 2002 (Thursday) at 11:00 am in Ahmedabad. India Today weekly reported in its issue dated 18 March 2002 that the Centre was contacted for sending the Army informally at 12:00 noon, i.e. within 1 hour, and by 4 pm an official request was sent to Delhi.
The Army was posted at the border at that time (in view of war clouds with Pakistan after the Parliament attack of 13 December 2001), but reached Ahmedabad so quickly on 28 Feb night, that newspapers reported its arrival the next day ie. 1 March itself. The Hindu reported on 1 March 2002 (Friday) that “The Army units, frantically called by the Chief Minister, Narendra Modi, as the situation seemed to slip out of hand, started arriving in Ahmedabad and are likely to be deployed in the city on Friday (1 March).” The same day The Indian Express also reported: “This pushed the toll, by 1.30 am, to at least 70 out of which 60 was for Ahmedabad alone. By this time, Defence Minister George Fernandes was in town meeting Chief Minister Narendra Modi and the Army’s Gandhinagar-based 11 Division had begun to send out reconnaissance patrols. The news of the Army’s arrival came as a glimmer of hope to residents of the city …”
After this, the Army DID NOT waste 1 day due to lack of transport but immediately swung into action. It began flag marches in the forenoon of 1 March 2002. India Today [18 March 2002] reported in its article “Chronology of a Crisis” that the Army staged a Flag March by 11:30 am in Ahmedabad on 1 March. It said: “According to Modi, he had officially called for the army by 4 p.m. on February 28. By 6.30 p.m. a formal request had landed in Delhi. By 1 a.m. on March 1, George Fernandes had landed in Ahmedabad at Modi’s behest. At great personal risk, he bravely took to the streets next morning to check the violence. At 11.30 a.m. the army was staging a flag march in Ahmedabad.”
The Hindu’s report on events of 1 March 2002 said the next day: “The Army began flag marches in the worst-affected areas of Ahmedabad, Baroda, Rajkot and Godhra cities and the `shoot at sight’ order was extended to all 34 curfew-bound cities and towns in Gujarat as the orgy of violence in the aftermath of the Godhra train carnage continued unabated for the second day today…”
The Times of India reported on 2 March 2002: “Neither the Army nor the shoot-at-sight orders given to the Gujarat police could control the mob frenzy in Ahmedabad on Friday (1 March 2002) as the city witnessed a total collapse of the law and order machinery for the second straight day, taking a heavy toll of human lives….”
And this was on 1 March, the 2nd day of the riots, when the violence was much less as compared to 28 February. This has 2 very important implications. First- if even the Army and shoot-at-sight orders could not control the violence when it was much lesser, what must have been the situation on 28 February when the Army was not present during the day and the violence was far more? And the second and most important implication is that the Army was out in action staging flag marches and trying to quell riots, not wasting the day at the airfields of Ahmedabad.
But some people are looking for some excuses to somehow crucify Modi. They earlier lied that Modi did not call the Army for 3 days. When it was clear that the Army was called not only on the same day, it was called FRANTICALLY, i.e. as soon as possible, someone looked for some sticks to somehow beat Modi with, lying that the Army wasted one day at the airfields! The Hindu said that the Army was called ‘Frantically’ by Modi.
Hence came this ridiculous charge of the Army wasting one day of 1 March 2002 due to lack of transport provided by Gujarat Government! Retired officer Shah claimed, “The troops sat on the airfield all through the 1st of March and we got the transport only on the 2nd of March.” This is absolute trash, the troops were staging flag marches in the forenoon of 1st March 2002 itself.
Note here that no one ever made this charge against Modi for so many years after 2002. In between these years, all sorts of lies were spread to blame and try to crucify Modi. From fake claims by Tehelka in 2007, by CNN-IBN TV channel on 26 October, 2007 after Tehelka’s operation was broadcast that ‘3 days license was given to kill with no Army called’ to several other lies, all sorts of claims were made. So carried away were Tehelka and Aaj Tak by their Gujarat ‘sting’ that they suffered the ides of February. The late B.P.Singhal wrote in his article “Gujarat ka sach” in The Pioneer dated 29th October 2007- “Aaj Tak harped on the same old refrain that ‘Modi did not call the Army until three days had passed’. When the TV channel contacted me on phone to get my response, I told the anchor that the Godhra carnage took place on February 27, 2002, that the Hindu backlash commenced on February 28 and the Army was doing flag march on the forenoon of March 1… He cut me short by saying that ‘This is exactly what we had said, no action was taken by Modi on 29th, 30th and 31st thus giving three clear days to the murderers…’ I had to cut him short by reminding him that the date 28th was 28th of February 2002 and there was no 29th, 30th or 31st in that month. The phone was of course disconnected.”
But not even these channels and Modi’s worst enemies like Outlook or Tehelka or The Week or anyone else ever alleged for 16 years since 2002 that the Army called to Ahmedabad had to spent 1 full day i.e. 1 March 2002 on airfields. This is because it simply did not! And making this charge would also have meant accepting that the Army was called on 28 February 2002, the first day of the riots itself, immediately, else it would not have been able to reach by 1st March 2002 morning. Had this charge of the Army spending 1 full day at Ahmedabad air-field, it would have reported like this in the media at that time definitely. The newspapers would have screamed the next day that ‘Despite the Army reaching, it has had to spend the whole day at the airfields due to lack of transport’. But nothing of this sort was reported, instead, it was reported that the Army staged flag marches. This claim, if true, would certainly not have been made for the first time after 16-17 years.
Retired officer Shah also said: “We finished the operation in 48 hours on the 4th of March but it could have been finished on the 2nd of March itself had we not lost those crucial hours.”
Again totally wrong on facts. The Army began operations on 1 March and ended them on 2nd March itself, not on 4th March. There was almost total peace in Gujarat on 3 March 2002, Sunday. The violence on 2nd March 2002 was much lesser as compared to 1st March, and Ahmedabad was almost back to normal. The Tribune reported on 3 March 2002 that: “(On 2 March) Ahmedabad, the worst hit by the communal flare-up in the wake of Godhra train killings, was virtually back to normal….”
That is, the Gujarat Government managed to control riots in the communally sensitive state in three days after Godhra and in only two days in a communally ultra-sensitive place like Ahmedabad! Reports of The Hindu and The Telegraph of 3 March 2002 also prove that Ahmedabad was virtually back to normal on 2 March 2002 itself. The Hindu reported that ‘The situation improved in Ahmedabad on 2 March 2002 with no major incidents of arson reported’ and The Telegraph reported that ‘Riot spins out of Ahmedabad’.
The following report from The Hindu dated 4 March 2002 will make it clear that the operations indeed ended on 2 March 2002 itself in the whole state with no violence occurring on 3 March:
“Ahmedabad, 3rd March. The orgy of violence in Gujarat appears to have ended. Today only two deaths were reported, one from Godhra. Officially the death toll is 431, more than half of them in Ahmedabad. Ahmedabad was quiet, apart from two major arson attacks on a Muslim-owned petrol station and warehouse. Curfew has been lifted in most areas of the 40 towns and cities where clashes were reported, including Naroda and Meghnaninagar (i.e. Gulberg Society case, i.e. Chamanpura, Ehsan Jafri case) in Ahmedabad, where hundreds were killed. The state administration says that curfew will be relaxed in more areas tomorrow. There was a ‘sense of normality in the State’ today.
But the smouldering remains of burnt-out buildings and the acrid smell of burning rubber, five days after the violence began, are a reminder that ‘normality’ in Ahmedabad is a very long way off”.
Thus, Shah’s claims are proved to be totally false, the violence ended on 2 March 2002 itself with 3 March being peaceful.
Shah said the police were “dumb bystanders” while the “mob was setting fire on streets and houses”. They were taking “no action” to prevent the “mayhem” that was being done. That is again factually wrong. Police took a lot of action.
In some cases, police were indeed bystanders but that was because they were heavily outnumbered by mobs on 28 February 2002. But they still did their best, and were certainly taking ‘action’ to prevent mayhem. The only paper which accused the police of deliberate inaction on 28 Feb 2002 was The Indian Express. After that, even The Indian Express admitted that the police did its best from 1st March 2002. Shah reached only on 1 March, so he certainly cannot say that the police were ‘dumb bystanders.’ What they did, we will see briefly here.
The Indian Express reported on 2 March: “ (On 1 March) The police, its credibility lowest than ever, tried to salvage its reputation intervening in some clashes by opening fire. Twenty were killed in police firing across the state, 12 in Ahmedabad.”
There are two things to be noted from this very vital statement. First, the police did their best to control the violence and could not be accused by anyone, even The Indian Express, of negligence from this day onward, the second day of the riots, i.e. 1 March 2002. And second, there were “clashes” going on between Hindus and Muslims, and not one-sided massacres of Muslims.
The report from India Today dated 18 March 2002 revealed the following points:
- The entire police force of Ahmedabad was deployed, total 6,000, out of which only 1,500 were armed. The size of the mobs was unprecedented on 28 February and the police forces were woefully short.
- Even though the Rapid Action Force was deployed, it too could not prevent the riots.
- Ahmedabad police received at least 3,500 calls on 28 February, against a normal average of 200.
- Ahmedabad Fire Brigade, which has the capacity to handle 100 calls, received 400 calls on 28 February.
- The statement of the then Ahmedabad Police Commissioner, P.C. Pandey showed that the situation was out of control.
The Hindu also reported the next day that mob fury reached its crescendo on 28 February 2002 and the situation slipped out of hand. Even in its infamous article misquoting the Chief Minister, Narendra Modi as saying, “Every action has an equal and opposite reaction” (which he never said), The Times of India reported on 2nd March 2002 that: “The mobs had swelled to enormous proportions. The sparse police presence looked like a drop in the ocean of violence”. This was despite the deployment of the entire police force, State Reserve Police, Rapid Action Force and CRPF personnel. The Times of India dated 1 March 2002 also said that the situation was out of control in Rajkot and that the fire brigade received 175 calls and was out of the water. This clearly shows that the situation was out of control.
Despite this, the police did their best and were not ‘dumb bystanders’ even on 28 February. Official records show that the police fired 1496 rounds in the state, including at least 600 in Ahmedabad on 28 February 2002. The police shot dead 11 Hindus and injured 16 and a total of 17 people were killed in police firing on that day. [SIT report, page 210] At least two were shot dead outside Ahmedabad in Nadiad and Godhra as per The Telegraph of 1 March 2002. 98 were killed in police firing in the first 3 days [28 Feb, 1 March & 2 March]. Total 5450 rounds were fired in the first 3 days, and 10,559 in the whole period of riots as per official records. In fact, the BBC reported online on 28 February when the death toll reported by it was a mere 40 for the entire state of Gujarat, i.e. when violence was going on: “The army has been deployed there (Ahmedabad) to counter Hindu youths…. They included six people, who were shot dead by police in Ahmedabad as they tried to restore calm. (the Final figure was 17 for the state)”.
No allegations of police inaction, or police joining rioters, instead it said: “The police tried to restore calm”.
The Telegraph dated 1 March, 2002, also reported [Author: No link available]: “Authorities said police were forced to open fire and lob tear gas shells at several places as protesters got out of hand during today’s VHP bandh (28 February, Thursday). Two persons died in police firing in Nadiad and Godhra.”
The Tribune (which editorially fully supported the claim of U.C. Banerjee that the Godhra train burning was an accident, absolving Muslim attackers of their heinous crime in January 2005) reported on 1st March, 2002:
“(On 28th February) The police complained they were outnumbered and the rampaging mobs had set up road blocks hindering their movement. Chief Minister, Narendra Modi told a crowded press conference here 700 arrests had been made throughout the state (BBC report quoted earlier also admitted 700 arrests), including 80 in Godhra, where the train was set ablaze killing 58 persons. Mr. Modi had telephoned Mr. Advani to apprise him of the situation in Gujarat in the wake of yesterday’s attack on Sabarmati Express and requested for additional paramilitary forces to deal with law and order. The Centre today issued a fresh direction to the state governments and Union Territories to deploy security forces in sensitive areas while arranging logistics for implementation of contingency plans …. The police opened fire in Kalol town to disperse unruly mobs…”
The staunchly anti-RSS, anti-BJP newspaper, The Hindu also reported the next day that on 28th February, the police were outnumbered and discarded tyres were used to create road blockades. Nowhere is it alleged that the police deliberately turned a blind eye to the rioting. No mention of police being involved in the violence or giving a free hand to the rioters. No mention of any delay in calling the Army. These charges of “police turning a blind eye, allowing killings for three days, not calling Army until three days had passed…etc.” were made after the riots. If these charges were true, the newspapers would have screamed and gone downtown on the very next day. Nothing like this happened. And, of course, no charge that the riots were being ‘sponsored’ by the Gujarat Government!
700 people were arrested by the police in the state, including around 80 in Godhra on the very first day of the violence i.e. 28 Feb when the situation was out of control. Official records reveal that 4297 tear gas shells were also burst in the whole state that day. The total number of tear gas shells burst is 15,369 for the entire period, and it is 6,500 in the first three days.
Direct evidence of the fact that Muslims were also on the offensive from 1 March 2002 is available from the report of a newspaper as anti-BJP as The Hindu dated 2 March, 2002: “But unlike Thursday (28 February) when one community was entirely at the receiving end, the minority backlash (on Friday, 1 March) caused further worsening of the situation. Police presence had little impact on the two communities pelting stones at each other in Bapunagar, Gomtipur, Dariapur, Shahpur, Naroda (all areas with high Muslim population) and other areas, from where incidents of firing had been reported…. A pitched battle was continuing between the two communities late in the evening. The official sources said timely arrival of the police foiled a retaliatory attempt to break into a prominent temple in Jamalpur locality in the walled city”.
The Indian Express reported on 2 March 2002: “(On 1st March) Tension escalated in the walled city areas just before the Friday prayers. There were violent clashes between mobs in Jamalpur, Bapunagar and Rakhial (all Muslim concentrated areas of Ahmedabad).” Clearly Muslims were on the offensive. And The Times of India also reported the same day: “(On 1st March) There were signs of retaliation in areas like Juhapura, Kalupur, Dariapur and Shahpur (all Muslim-dominated areas)….” This clears all possible doubts.
The efforts of Narendra Modi to control violence can be clearly seen from the report in India Today weekly dated 18 March 2002 in an article titled “Chronology of a Crisis”.
“27th FEBRUARY, 2002
8:03 a.m.: Incident at Godhra claims lives of 57 karsevaks.
8:30 a.m.: Modi is informed of the carnage. (This could be at 9 am)
4:30 p.m.: Gujarat Assembly adjourned and Modi visits Godhra where he holds a meeting, giving shoot-at-sight orders to the police.
10:30 p.m.: CM holds meeting with senior government officials at Gandhinagar; (This meeting was simply a law and order review meeting) orders curfew in sensitive places and pre-emptive arrests (These orders of curfew and preventive arrests had nothing to do with that meeting).
28th FEBRUARY, 2002
8:00 a.m.: Special control room set up in CM’s house to monitor the situation during VHP bandh.
12:00 p.m.: Modi informally contacts Centre for calling in Army. Cabinet Secretary, T.R. Prasad tells Defence Secretary, Y. Narain that army is to be mobilised.
12:30 p.m.: Vice-Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General N.C. Vij tells Narain that only two columns are available as the rest are deployed on the border.
12:35 p.m.: Prasad directs Narain to advise Chief of Army Staff, Gen. Padmanabhan to have troops ready due to the rapidly deteriorating situation in Ahmedabad.
12:45 p.m.: Narain tells Vij to arrange immediate movement of troops to Gujarat.
4:00 p.m.: Modi requests army deployment following consultations with Advani (the then Home Minister of India).
6:45 p.m.: Cabinet Committee on Security meets under the Prime minister’s chairmanship; approves the immediate movement of troops to Ahmedabad and other parts of Gujarat. Vajpayee (the then Prime Minister) deputes Fernandes (Defence Minister) to supervise the deployment of troops.
7:00 p.m.: The Gujarat Government’s formal request for Army deployment is received in Delhi.
11:30 p.m.: Airlifting of troops begins.
1st MARCH , 2002
2:30 a.m.: A brigade reaches Ahmedabad. The 54th Division’s General Officer Commanding contacts acting Chief Secretary.
9:00 a.m.: Discussions between representatives of the Army and the state take place, followed by troop flag march in Ahmedabad.”
This above article also nails the lie that the Army spent one day at the airfield in Ahmedabad.
On pages 445-450 the SIT report [SIT was appointed and monitored by the SC] says, after giving various facts:
“There is evidence available on record to show that immediately (after Godhra which occurred between 7:47 to 8:20 AM on 27 Feb) the State machinery was put on the high alert and this was communicated to all District authorities and Commissioners of Police. The first alert message of 27-02-2002 from the Home Department covered the need to take precautionary measures including adequate police bandobast and preventive measures including the issuance of prohibitory orders depending upon the local situation. It was instructed that anti-social and hardcore communal elements should be dealt with firmly… (Page 445)
…It was understood that withdrawing the Army at such critical juncture when war like situation existed with the neighbour needed a high-level decision at the Centre. This decision to withdraw the Army and deploy in Gujarat was immediately taken at the highest level in the Centre at the request of Gujarat Govt.… (Page 447)
…The State Govt. had also made a request on 28-02-2002, to the neighbouring States of Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh to spare the services of their Armed Reserve Police companies. However, only Maharashtra responded by sending 2 Coys of SRP, whereas the Govt. of Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh expressed their inability to spare any police force due to the internal commitments. It may thus be seen that there was no delay, whatsoever in requisitioning the Army and its deployment by the State as and when they realized on 28-02-2002 afternoon that the situation was going beyond control. Significantly, Union Defence Minister arrived at Ahmedabad on 28.02.2002 night to ensure that Army formations take their positions without delay.
Shri G. Subba Rao, the then Chief Secretary, who had gone abroad, was recalled and he arrived on 01-03-2002… (Page 448)
…Frantic messages were sent by the Home Department on 01-03-2002 to 06-03-2002 and specific instructions were given to the effect that the riots had to be controlled and all steps should be taken to restore normalcy and peace in the State… (Page 449)
…Further investigation has established that the State Govt. was reasonably vigilant vis-à-vis the developments on the law & order front and immediately responded by bringing to the notice of all District officials, the need to maintain adequate bandobast in view of the Godhra incident on 27-02-2002…(page 450)”
This confirms what we have said in our book. That the Army was called ‘frantically’, that George Fernandes came immediately, that alert was sounded, the police force was requested from neighbouring states, etc.
The UPA government had told the parliament in 2005 that 790 Muslims and 254 Hindus were killed, 223 more people reported missing and another 2,500 injured during the 2002 riots in Gujarat. Shah maintains in the book that the “official figures of deaths and damage do not reflect a true picture of the actual extent of the carnage”. These are again lying.
That the UPA Government, with Congress President and staunchly anti-BJP Sonia Gandhi as the UPA chief, and Communists as outside supporters, gave the figure of 790 Muslims and 254 Hindus killed in the Gujarat riots inside the Parliament is something worth pondering about. This was in a WRITTEN REPLY, i.e. the government knew fully well what it was doing. It was in response to a question asked by a Congress member of the Rajya Sabha and Babri Masjid Action Committee lawyer, R.K. Anand. The ex-gratia compensation paid by the Gujarat Government shows 1169 deaths. The UPA Government also gave a special additional package of 3.5 lakh rupees to the Gujarat riot victims in 2008, also to the same number- 1169. UPA Government would have given compensation to all those killed in the riots, and there is no way it would not have given to the kin of any dead, so it shows that the correct figure of people killed is around 1169.
Actually, official records show that the figures given initially in 2002 said that 228 people were missing (closely matched by the UPA Government also saying 223 people missing in Parliament on 11 May 2005) and later 101 people were found alive, so the final missing people’s figure is 127 only. The official statistics show that 101 people were found alive and 127 people are still missing and hence assumed dead after the 7-year period is over.
The death toll is less than or equal to 1169 since it is absolutely impossible that the UPA Government would have failed to give ex-gratia to families of people killed in the riots when the riots have been politicized so much. (And if the UPA government which was a staunch opponent of Narendra Modi claims that any more than 1169 people were killed in the riots, then it itself would be admitting that it did not pay compensation to some killed people’s families!) UPA’s figures in Parliament would amount to 1171 deaths- 790 Muslims, 254 Hindus and 127 missing people (after many missing were found alive), 790+254+127= 1171. This closely matches the ex-gratia figure of 1169, paid by both Gujarat and the UPA Government. Even assuming that every single missing person is dead, the death toll cannot cross 1171. Despite this, Shah tries to imply that the death toll is higher.
The Tribune reported on 30 April 2002 that the death toll crossed the 900 mark on 29 April. The riots had almost ended by that time and maximum 50 more would have been killed by 10 May 2002. And this was 2 months after the real violence of 28 Feb, 1st and 2nd March had ended, most of the bodies of the killings of these days had been found by 30 April. Thus there is no way at all that the toll could be anywhere close to 2,000. The 950-odd toll was exaggerated and inflated to 2000 by the liars some months after the riots.
There is huge evidence to show PM Modi took all steps to prevent & control riots which were also not one-sided. Read http://www.gujaratriots.com We gave a challenge to our opponents to refute any of our arguments on merit. This challenge was given in April 2010 and has not been answered since the past 8 years. Our book “Gujarat Riots: The True Story” gives all details. Such defamatory & inflammatory lies spread by Shah & journalists like Hartosh Singh Bal need to be nailed and refuted comprehensively.