The Bold Voice of J&K

Denial of bail to Godhra Train Burning convicts

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Dear Editor,
The Supreme Court has denied bail to three convicts involved in stone-pelting, looting gold ornaments and damaging the Sabarmati Express with iron rods. The train burning incident which had claimed the lives of 59 Hindu Kar Sevaks on February 27, 2002 has left a deep scar on the face of the nation. This ugly incident led for the crowds to go on rampage to kill 2000 people. This unhappy event brought the then Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi into disrepute. Godhra carnage was politicized. UK and USA denied visa to Modi. Had Modi not become the Prime Minister, the UK and USA would have ostracized him forever. First to lift the ban on entry of Modi was the UK. Later the US followed suit as both the countries foresaw Modi becoming Prime Minister. A bench of Chief Justice of India D.Y. Chandrachud and Justices PS Narasimha and Manoj Misra has viewed very seriously the act of stone-pelting, looting gold ornaments and damaging the Sabarmati Express with iron rods by Saukat Yusuf Ismail, Bilal Abdullah Ismail and Siddik and turned down the plea to enlarge them on bail. The three convicts are reportedly serving jail sentence for life-time. The burners of Sabarmati Express are responsible for 2000+59 deaths. Capital punishment is awarded in rarest of the rare cases. The train burning case even with the buck stopping at the killing of 59 kar sevaks is undoubtedly rarest of the rarest cases. Godhra carnage would not have taken place had the coaches not been burned to kill the kar sevaks returning from Ayodhya to Gujarat. In 2017, the High Court had reportedly commuted the death sentence to life imprisonment in respect of 11 convicts. The government of Gujarat should have contested the High Court order in Supreme Court. Not even death sentence to the convicts can assuage the hurt feelings of the family members of the killed.

K.V. Seetharamaiah

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