ALLAHABAD: The Uttar Pradesh government on Thursday informed the Allahabad High Court through an affidavit that it would not grant sanction to prosecute Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath in the Gorakhpur communal riot case of 2007.
The riots were sparked allegedly after a provocative speech by Adityanath, the then local MP, over the killing of a Hindu youth in clashes between Hindu and Muslim groups during a Moharram procession.
The BJP MP was arrested and remained in jail for 10 days before getting bail from a court.
UP Chief Secretary Rahul Bhatnagar, who appeared in the court following the directions of the High Court, filed the affidavit stating the State’s principal secretary (home) refused on May 3 to grant sanction to prosecute the accused in the communal riot case of 2007.
The affidavit further stated the decision of the principal secretary is based on the opinion of law department, forensic report and other evidences collected by the investigating officer (IO) while the CB-CID had filed the final report before the trial court in connection with the case.
Advocate General Raghvendra Singh, who appeared before the court on behalf of the State government, argued that the case was politically motivated and was registered by the petitioners after a delay of almost 10 months after the incident occured.
The development came during hearing of a petition seeking an independent probe into the violence.
The petition was filed by Parvez Parwaz, the complainant in the FIR lodged at Cantonment police station of Gorakhpur in connection with the riots and Asad Hayat, a witness in the case. The petitioners moved the high court seeking an investigation into the case by an independent agency.
In response to advocate general’s submission, petitioners’ counsel SFA Naqvi requested the High Court to grant time for filing an amendment application in order to challenge the government decision. Naqvi based his argument on the premise that an accused cannot be a judge for his own cause. He contended that the order was passed by the principal secretary (home) who is working under the chief minister, an accused in the case.