State itself the culprit in Gulberg massacre : Teesta Setalvad, Journalist
Updated on: 03 Jun 2016
Teesta Setalvad was a journalist long before she became an activist. She had been reporting from Gujarat, her home state, and some other parts of the country since 1985.
But then the riots in Bombay during 1992-93 got her into campaigning. And by 2002 Gujarat riots, Gulberg society massacre being the first of them, she had become a full time human rights activist.
That was the time she founded Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP) with a few colleagues, which has been fighting for victims of Gulberg and other massacres since.
Catch asked her a few quick questions about the verdict of the special court, and spoke to her about her fight for justice and her plans for legal battles in future.
SM: How did you get involved with Gulberg massacre victims?
TS: Before the riots I was doing stories from Gujarat for our magazine Communalism Combat. As soon as the massacres broke out I started getting about five to six hundred calls every day. Then when I saw the violence, realised its magnitude, I knew I had personal stakes in this.
There was a similarity in some ways to the violence that I had seen and reported back in the Bombay riots of '92-93. At that time we had campaigned to get the Justice Srikrishna report made public. We wanted everyone to know the truth and we published it in book format and sold it for a pittance.
When National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) brought out their report I and some of my colleagues again started a campaign around it, to get the judiciary and the state to implement its recommendations.
SM: And since then CPJ has worked with the victims of 2002 riots. How successful do you think you have been with your campaign so far?