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Last Updated: Thursday, 12 February, 2004, 11:06 GMT
Police submit Gujarat riot report
Gujarat religious riots
The riots left at least 1,000 dead - mostly Muslims
India's Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has submitted a report to the Supreme Court on an alleged gang rape and murder of Muslims during the 2002 Gujarat riots.

Fourteen Muslims are alleged to have been killed and three women raped in the incident.

The CBI was asked to take over the investigations by the Supreme Court after local police closed the case.

More than a thousand people died during the Gujarat riots, India's worst religious violence for a decade.

During its investigation, the CBI unearthed the skeletal remains of four people including that of a child in Gujarat's Dahod district.

The bones have been sent for DNA testing.

The CBI was asked to follow up the case after India's National Human Rights Commission came in support of a key eyewitness, Bilkis Bano.

Bilkis Bano, who was pregnant at the time, is reported to have seen three women being raped in the incident in which 14 Muslims were also killed.

Ms Bano herself managed to survive because the attackers assumed her to be dead.

She says she had named the accused to the Gujarat police but they allegedly took no action.

Arrests

Thirteen people have been arrested by the CBI in this case including a policeman for allegedly tampering with evidence.

The case is expected to shortly come up before the Supreme Court.

More than 10 Gujarat riot cases are currently before the court.

The Gujarat authorities have been criticised for their poor handling of riot cases.

Last October, the Supreme Court ordered the government to appoint new public prosecutors to handle the cases following the acquittal of 21 Hindus charged with burning 12 Muslims in a bakery in Baroda city.

The Gujarat riots started after 59 Hindus were killed in an attack on a train carrying Hindu pilgrims in February 2002. That attack was blamed on a Muslim mob.





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