25 January, 2021

Why I Stand By Her

Support for Teesta is support for access to justice for victims of a pogrom.

Why I Stand By Her

Victims of crime are known to get so tired of legal processes that they drop out from fatigue. Often, they are bought over by the accused. This is likelier when the accused is a powerful person, with the ability to mobilise finances and wield political clout.

Zakia Jafri, widow of Ehsan Jafri, a former Congress MP who was burnt alive in Gulberg Society during the 2002 anti-Muslim riots in Gujarat, was fighting a chief minister (Narendra Modi), and it was not until the Supreme Court appointed an SIT—taking the investigation of the very state she was fighting—that things started to move. Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP), of which Teesta Setalvad is the moving spirit, supported Zakia through this and supports her to this day. Support for Teesta is support for access to justice for victims of a pogrom.

It’s for the courts, of course, to decide whether a crime has been committed, but the least society can offer Zakia is the support she needs to carry the prosecution through to completion. There is no ‘clean chit’ yet. Appellate and...



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