Narendra Modi’s Name Removed by Gujarat Court as Defendant in Suit Seeking Damages for Deaths in 2002 Riots

The Principal Civil Judge of Prantij in Sabarkantha district, Gujarat on Saturday removed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s name as the first defendant in a civil case filed against the State of Gujarat seeking damages for the killing of three British citizens during the 2002 riots.

The three suits were filed at the Prantih court in 2004 by few British citizens. The suits were later consolidated. The case was filed against 14 individuals including Mr. Narendra Modi, then Chief Minister of State and Gordhan Zadaphia, then Home Minister of the State. The suit seeked Rs. 20 crores as damages for the death of their three relatives, who were killed by a mob on National Highway 8 on February 28, 2002 while they were returning from Rajasthan.

In an application filed by lawyer S S Shah on behalf Mr. Modi praying to strike off Mr. Modi’s name from the suit, the court ordered the plaintiff to delete the name of the defendant no. 1 (Mr. Narendra Modi) from the cause title.

The Court said that “the averments in the plaint were made cleverly to connect Mr. Modi to the riots and to seek compensation from him”. The court noted that Mr. Modi was not a “necessary or proper party” in the case.

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