Ex-IPS Sanjiv Bhatt sentenced to life for custodial death while quelling communal riot

As ASP in Jamnagar, Bhatt detained over 100 persons to contain a communal conflagration during L.K. Advani’s infamous Rath Yatra in Nov 1990. One Prabhudas Vaishnani later died in a hospital

Former IPS Sanjiv Bhatt is known to have accused PM Narendra Modi of giving Hindu mobs a free hand during 2002 anti-Muslim pogrom in his capacity as then Gujarat CM.
Former IPS Sanjiv Bhatt is known to have accused PM Narendra Modi of giving Hindu mobs a free hand during 2002 anti-Muslim pogrom in his capacity as then Gujarat CM.
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NH Web Desk

A Jamnagar court on Thursday sentenced former Gujarat-cadre IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt to life imprisonment, holding him responsible for the death of a person in police custody in Jamjodhpur in 1990.

Alongside Bhatt, the Jamnagar District Court also sentenced Pravin Singh Jhala to prison for life.

The case pertains to the death of a man named Prabhudas Madhavji Vaishnani who died on November 11, 1990, allegedly due to torture in police custody.

Vaishnani was among more than 100 persons detained after communal riots engulfed the Jamjodhpur village ahead of BJP leader L.K. Advani's infamous rath yatra.

Bhatt was posted as the additional superintendent of police in Jamnagar at the time of the incident. He had gone on the field to quell a communal riot.

He was suspended in 2011 on charges of remaining absent from duty without permission and misuse of official vehicles, and later sacked in August 2015.

Bhatt is known for filing an affidavit in the Supreme Court against the then Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, concerning Modi's alleged role in the 2002 Gujarat riots.

He claimed to have attended a meeting during which Modi allegedly asked top cops to let Hindus vent out their anger against the Muslims.

However, the Special Investigation Team (SIT) appointed by the apex court concluded that Bhatt did not attend the meeting and dismissed his allegations.

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court had rejected his plea seeking examination of 11 additional witnesses in the case. He had argued that these witnesses were crucial for arriving at a just and fair decision in the case.

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Published: 20 Jun 2019, 12:51 PM
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