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News : Archive (December 2003)
  • Overseas peaceniks say Gujarat riots disturbing
    Times News Network, December 31, 2003
    AHMEDABAD: Even as foreign delegates attending the International Conference on World Peace (ICWP) deliberated on various aspects of peace on Tuesday, they wondered why there was no attempt to probe the reasons behind the communal flare-ups in Gujarat.

  • Gujarat 2003: HOPE/ Not forsaken
    Express News Service, December 31, 2003
    If 2002 went down in Gujarat’s history as one of the blackest years, with victims of the post-Godhra violence still to reconcile themselves to the trauma they underwent, 2003 brought hope.

    For riot victims frustrated by the way cases were going, hope took the shape of intervention by a vigilant National Human Rights Commission and the Supreme Court in the Best Bakery massacre case.

  • Communal violence continues to cast shadow on Gujarat, By Ashish Mehta, Ahmedabad, Dec 29, 2003
    Last year's sectarian violence continued to cast its shadow over life in Gujarat in 2003 even as the state tried to boost its economy and maintain the fragile social balance.

  • Justice still eludes Best Bakery victims
    Legal View/Rakesh Bhatnagar, Times News Network, December 29, 2003
    The accused in the Best Bakery case have reason to rejoice again. The Gujarat High Court has dismissed a reluctant state government’s revised appeal against their acquittal.

  • Remember this?
    Kalpana Sharma, The Hindu, December 28, 2003
    Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi is convinced that anyone who still speaks of the horrifying events of February-March 2002 in Gujarat — "five-star activists and pseudo-secularists" — is "trying to tarnish the State's image". There is not even a hint of acknowledgment, leave alone regret, about the killings during those months that scarred not just Gujarat but India.

  • HC upholds acquittal in Best Bakery case
    Press Trust of India, Ahmedabad, December 26, 2003
    In a setback to proponents of re-trial in the Best Bakery case, the Gujarat High Court on Friday dismissed the state government's "amended" appeal filed at the Supreme Court's behest challenging the acquittal of 21 accused and also an application seeking their retrial.

  • Gujarat govt admits lapses in Best Bakery case, December 23, 2003
    The Gujarat government on Monday pointed out the lapses by the police in 'registering and recording of FIR' and on the part of the prosecution in 'recording of evidence' of witnesses in the Best Bakery case, in which all 21 accused were acquitted by a fast-track court this year.

  • 'Zahira's statement should have been the FIR'
    Times News Network, December 23, 2003
    AHMEDABAD: The state government on Monday told the Gujarat High Court that despite the police recording Zahira Sheikh’s statement first in the Best Bakery case, the prosecution treated the statement of another victim Raees Khan Pathan as the FIR in the case.

  • Why no appeal? We didn't know: Gujarat, December 23 2003
    NEW DELHI: In an affidavit filed last week before the Supreme Court to explain its failure to do justice to the post-Godhra riot victims, the Gujarat government came up with an array of excuses but one stood out: the state government claimed it learnt of acquittals in the Kidiad massacre case more than a year after the verdict.

  • BJP leader files complaint against writer for criticising Modi
    Press Trust of India, December 23, 2003
    A BJP leader in Ahmedabad has filed a complaint against noted writer Vijay Tendulkar, accusing him of trying to disturb communal harmony.

    In his complaint, Rajbhai Zala said Tendulkar has tried to disturb communal harmony by making a "derogatory" statement in public against Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, police said.

  • Not too subtle blackmail
    The Hindustan Times, December 21, 2003
    The Narendra Modi government in Gujarat has by now shown itself to be the epitome of brazenness as it has sought in vain to persuade the world that nothing out of the ordinary occurred in the state for a year-and-a-half.

  • Gujarat for “active court role” in Best Bakery case
    PTI, Dec 20, 2003
    The trial court judge and the public prosecutor should have played "active" role in the "specific circumstances" of witnesses turning hostile one after another during the trial in the sensational Best Bakery carnage of Vadodara, the Gujarat government submitted to the High Court here today.

  • US slams Gujarat for riots record
    The Times of India, December 20, 2003
    A US State Department report on international religious freedom has slammed India , and particularly Gujarat, for a poor record in protecting the interests of religious minorities.
  • (India: International Religious Freedom Report 2003, Released by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor)

  • 'Hindutva' getting institutionalised in India: US report, December 20, 2003
    Washington, Dec 20 : Hindutva, often synonymous with "cultural nationalism", is slowly but surely getting institutionalised in India, says a State Department report on religious freedom.

  • Narendra Modi warns his critics against 'defaming' Gujarat
    Press Trust of India, December 20, 2003
    Gujarat's Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday accused his critics of conspiring to defame his state, and asserted that his people would foil such efforts.

  • Gujarat HC begins hearing on 'amended' Best Bakery case
    Press Trust of India, December 19, 2003
    Gujarat High Court on Friday began hearing on the "amended" appeal of State Government, challenging the acquittal of 21 persons accused in the Best Bakery carnage of Vadodara and seeking retrial in the sensational case.

  • SC notice to Gujarat on death of British nationals, December 19, 2003
    The Supreme Court on Friday issued notice to the Gujarat government and the Centre on a petition alleging shoddy investigation into killings of three British nationals by a mob during the post-Godhra riots and seeking a Central Bureau of Investigation probe into it.

  • Theatre sensitises Gujarat about communalism, December 15, 2003
    A theatre group whose play has made a huge impact in volatile Gujarat says it simply offers people a chance to do some soul-searching about sectarian hatred.

    "People of all faiths and ideologies are welcome to perform with us," says Saumya Joshi, eminent playwright and founder of Fade-in Theatre.

    Joshi's play in Gujarati, "Dost Chokkas Ahin Ek Nagar Vastu Hatu", or "There was definitely a city here," won him accolades in India and abroad.

  • Ban on cow slaughter in Madhya Pradesh
    By Staff Correspondent, The Hindu, December 13, 2003
    BHOPAL DEC. 12. The Madhya Pradesh Cabinet today decided to impose a complete ban on cow slaughter, a promise made by the Bharatiya Janata Party before the elections.

  • 'Vande Mataram' restored
    By Staff Correspondent, The Hindu, December 13, 2003
    JAIPUR DEC. 12. The Bharatiya Janata Party-led Government in Rajasthan has ordered the recital of Vande Mataram every morning in the hostels run by the Social Welfare Department.

  • It was genocide, says report
    By Kalpana Sharma, The Hindu, December 11, 2003
    The violence in Gujarat has still not ended. This is one of the conclusions of the report, "Threatened Existence: a feminist analysis of the genocide in Gujarat", by the International Initiative for Justice in Gujarat.  (Report is available online.)

  • Cops, BJP told to stay away from Godhra victims
    The Hindu, December 11, 2003
    The two-man Inquiry Commission, probing Godhra train carnage and its aftermath today ordered Gujarat police, VHP and BJP to "keep away" from several riot witness/victims from Vatva area till their cross-examination was completed by the prosecution.

  • Now, achievement yatras in Gujarat
    Indo-Asian News Service, December 9, 2003
    The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Gujarat is getting ready to celebrate Chief Minister Narendra Modi's one year in power with - what else? - another round of yatras in the State.

  • Post-poll Modi too sings development tune
    CM skips Hindutva theme, tells his MLAs ‘carry the message development to which our party is committed’
    Express News Service, December 9, 2003

    Victory changes perspective. But it has taken three victories for Chief Minister Narendra Modi to begin to believe that the development card may well ace the Hindutva card.

  • Defeat and its consequences
    We need a rainbow coalition to stem the saffron wave
    Mani Shankar Aiyar, The Indian Express, December 9, 2003

    Therefore, it is imperative that the enlightened element of our public life recognise that the next Lok Sabha election is less about winning the election than about stopping the BJP from winning.

  • No missing saffron in Uma red carpet
    VHP cheers, Chief Secy announces sadhu blessings, Ram in the air
    Neerja Chowdhury & Hartosh Singh Bal, The Indian Express, December 8, 2003

    The elections may have been all about development but today when Uma Bharti took the oath of office at a public function in Bhopal, she raised many eyebrows: with her on the dais were some of the leading lights of the Ram Janmabhoomi movement and one of her first acts was to seek their blessings.

  • Power of ‘parkati’ women
    The educated woman is not as politically irrelevant as the pundits think
    Sagarika Ghose, The Indian Express, December 8, 2003

    It has been acknowledged that hindutva has been marginalised in these elections: the voter has shouted that only when the BJP is moderate and development-oriented will they vote for it. But another stereotype has also been defeated in these elections and this is that women who are not backward caste are politically irrelevant.

  • BJP win bitter-sweet for Sangh
    By Satarupa Bhattacharjya in New Delhi,, 05 December , 2003
    Although the colour saffron swept Chattisgarh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, for the Sangh Parivar, the Bharatiya Janata Party's victory tasted bitter-sweet.

  • Tight security for Babri Masjid demolition anniversary
    The Hindu, December 5, 2003
    An alert was sounded today in Uttar Pradesh and security was stepped up across the country on the eve of the 11th anniversary of the demolition of the Babri Masjid.

  • More - Archive (November, 2003)