New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted bail to the 17 convicts, who were given a life term, in the 2002 Sardarpura post-Godhra riots case, in which 33 Muslims were burnt alive. The top court also barred the convicts from entering Gujarat and asked them to relocate to Madhya Pradesh and do community service.

The Supreme Court bench comprising Chief Justice S A Bobde and justices B R Gavai and Surya Kant divided the convicts in two groups and said one group would move out of Gujarat and stay at Indore in Madhya Pradesh. The other group of convicts will have to relocate themselves to Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh, the bench said.

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"They will be stationed in Indore and Jabalpur till their appeals are finally decided by the Supreme Court," the court said, adding that the condition also includes social service.

The convicts, who were handed down a life sentence in the Sardarpura riots case, have appealed against the Gujarat High Court order convicting them. The court said that all the convicts will have to undertake community services for six hours a week besides reporting to the local police station on a weekly basis as bail conditions.

The Supreme Court has directed the District Legal Services Authorities at Indore and Jabalpur to ensure that the convicts observe bail conditions diligently. It has also directed DLSA to help the convicts in finding suitable employment for earning their livelihood.

The top court also directed the Madhya Pradesh State Legal Service Authority to file a report after three months stating as to whether the convicts have complied with the conditions or not. Earlier the Gujarat High Court had acquitted 14 and convicted 17 in the Sardarpura post-Godhra riots case.

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The case involves the massacre of 33 Muslims at Sardarpura village in the riots that swept through Gujarat in the aftermath of the death of Hindu train passengers on Sabarmati Express in Godhra on February 27, 2002. At least 1,000 people, mostly Muslims, were killed in the three-day violence.

 

(With PTI Inputs)

Posted By: Talib Khan