Exclusive Interview with : Teesta Setalvad, social activist on Gulberg Society verdict
Updated on: 22 Jun 2016
The cancellation of FCRA licence for the NGO Sabrang Trust by the Union Home Ministry and the Gulberg Society judgment which came within a day of each other has brought the focus sharply on civil rights activist Teesta Setalvad. Yogesh Pawar caught up with her to find out her side of the story. Excerpts.
How do you react to the Gulberg society judgment by the special court on Friday?
I'm still processing the whole judgment to come to a considered opinion point-by-point. But I've read and seen the media coverage. On the face of it, I feel completely outraged by the complete disregard for eye-witness testimonies. These were witnesses who actually faced the attack, were injured and stood the test of cross-examination in court. We had 19 very strong 'occurrence witnesses' who pointed out how the mob began building on February 28, 2002 from 9 am and began growing in its fury and strength till 10.30 am. Many said, then DGP PC Pande came and went, many said then joint CP MK Tandon also visited the spot around 10.30 am (the latter's accepted this on record) with a striking force which did not take any action though the 5,000-strong mob began flinging burning tyres and attacking the society. I'm just aghast at why the judge disregarded such voluminous evidence of what transpired between 9 am to 1 pm and why the SIT did not push this case in an ethical way.
And you'd pointed what you're now saying to the court too?