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RAM JETHMALANI
ETHICS & POWER

Ram Jethmalani is a senior politician and eminent lawyer.

UPA, media have a brazen mission to demonize Modi

news report in the New Indian Express dated 30 November 2011 provides an unequivocal insight into the manner in which the CBI has been conducting itself in Gujarat related cases. I quote: "The Supreme Court on Tuesday rapped the CBI for making insinuations saying that the trial courts in Gujarat and its judges were biased and in favour of the state's ex-Home Minister Amit Shah in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case. It is 'complete nonsense' and 'contemptuous,' the Bench remarked in the same breath. The CBI's statement in the chargesheet that the accused in the case have 'presence of their kith and kin in the subordinate judiciary in various capacities as prosecutors, magistrates as well as judges' was termed as 'highly irresponsible' by a Bench comprising Justice Aftab Alam and Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai." The Attorney General floundered in his reply when the Bench asked him whether he wanted the allegations retained or deleted, pleading that he was a late entrant to the case, and would make an application for deletion of the offending paragraphs from the petition.

The Bench was hearing a petition seeking shifting of the trial of the case outside Gujarat, and remarked, "At this stage when trial has not commenced, it is premature for the CBI to seek transfer of the case as there is no instance for the CBI to show that the witnesses are turning hostile or there has been tampering of the evidence."

All one can say is that the UPA, all its investigating agencies and some of their media friends continue to be obsessively fixated with demonizing Gujarat and Modi. Time and time again, they get caught subverting procedures in flagrante delicto, retract temporarily, and then start again in an utterly remorseless manner, almost as if they have a nefarious mission to accomplish. A mission that has become a sordid article of faith with them, a credo they dare not desert, regardless of the credibility they lose or the illegalities they commit. Well, so long as the government is theirs, these self-styled crusaders come to no harm, at least not yet, and continue recklessly and shamelessly on their mission.

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The most shocking revelation is Sanjeev Bhatt’s criminal offence of hacking the mail account of the Additional Advocate General and sharing the id and password with others.

This brigade has also become a haven for disgruntled sections of the bureaucracy, who believe that by becoming anti-Modi zealots, they might enter some paradise in the UPA government. They take their cue from the case of a Gujarat cadre IPS officer Kuldeep Sharma, who faced criminal charges and caught the fancy of the Central government on account of his anti-Modi utterances, and was appointed as DG-Bureau of Police Research and Development without the mandatory vigilance clearance from the state government. Another thoroughly insubordinate and undisciplined police officer, Sanjeev Bhatt thought it profitable in his frustration to join ranks with the Modi bashers. Perhaps he too dreamt of the paradise of Delhi, even as a Jamnagar custodial death case of the early 1990s presently dogs him in the Supreme Court. Apart from violating several All India Service Rules (detailed in my article of 2 November 2011) and not filing his property returns, he appears to be utterly careless too. A police officer's most valuable professional assets are his weapon and his information, and any carelessness on either of them can cost him dearly, especially if the information he is careless about is conspiratorial and subversive. And this is exactly what Sanjeev Bhatt seems to have done. He handed over charge and his official computer leaving all his emails in an unprotected mode for all to read. The state government forwarded them to the SIT with a request to place them for consideration of the Amicus Curie and the Special Bench hearing the riot cases to see the real motive behind Bhatt's prayer for transfer of the investigation of K.D. Panth's complaint against Bhatt to the CBI.

What emerges from his emails is a sinister harvest of communication between him and the anti-Modi brigade, almost like a conspiracy against the Chief Minister and the state spearheaded by him, even while he is beneficiary of the constitutional protection that he as an IPS officer derives from Article 311 of the Constitution. The mails establish without doubt that Sanjeev Bhatt has violated every rule in the book, and behaves like a law unto himself, having the audacity to assume charge in Ahmedabad, while posted to Junagarh. He continuously leaks his correspondence with government, including an affidavit yet to be submitted to the Supreme Court, to the media and other fellow cohorts. They also reveal a continuous and determined campaign by him against the Gujarat government, virtually imploring the media to highlight his false affidavit, brazenly trying to mobilize the anti-Modi brigade and "pressure-groups" to use the "media card" and influence judicial proceedings before the Supreme Court and amicus curie, and instigating various activist organisations directly to pressurise the amicus curie with a flood of letters.

The mails provide conclusive evidence of Sanjeev Bhatt hobnobbing with the Opposition Congress party in a thoroughly illegal and almost seditious manner to concoct evidence against the Chief Minister regarding his claimed presence at the Chief Minister's meeting on 27 February 2002. Top Congress leaders, such as, Arjunbhai Modhwadiya, Shaktisinh Gohil, Krishnakant Vakharia and Nasir Chhipa, are seen in constant touch with him and are giving him "packages" and "materials", and are guiding him. Curiously, Bhatt almost seems to beg Shaktisinh Gohil to provide him with a BlackBerry, something he could well afford himself. Or is Blackberry a code for something else?

As the dots get connected, we see an ominous picture of a systematic and larger conspiracy, involving Sanjeev Bhatt, top leaders of the Congress in Gujarat and vested interest groups determined to concoct facts and create false evidence to keep the Godhra riot issue alive, almost ten years after the completion of judicial proceedings. Sanjeev Bhatt leaves no stone unturned, continuously contacting third parties and persuading them to swear affidavits to support the false stand taken by him in his affidavit in the Supreme Court, and send them to the Amicus Curie and the Supreme Court.

he most shocking revelation which gives a true snapshot of the character of this serving police officer is his criminal offence of hacking the mail account of the Additional Advocate General and sharing the id and password with others. He exchanged emails with journalist Rajdeep Sardesai requesting him, "Please make someone go through the mailbox of Tushar Mehta...If need be, I can sit with someone from your channel and point out the significance of certain mail exchanges." The silver lining is that Sardesai, now a responsible journalist, seems to have given the offer short shrift. The same emails were shared with another journalist, Rajiv Pathak, whose response was identical in refusing to use the unauthorized details supplied by Bhatt, at which Bhatt gives some pious advice: "Please ensure that the password of TM mail account is neither changed nor shared with anyone else." Rajiv Pathak very maturely replies, "Don't worry sir, since it came from you, I have no right on changing or sharing it with anyone. Since my office is not willing to use this, this becomes entirely your property which I have no claim."

The journalist shows much greater ethics than the cop.

This is the first of a two-part article.

 
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