Ahmedabad court remands Teesta Setalvad to police custody till July 1

The human rights defender will be next produced in court on July 2


The court of a Metropolitan Magistrate has remanded activist Testa Setalvad to police custody till July 1. Setalvad had been picked up from her Mumbai home by a unit of the Gujarat Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) on Saturday afternoon and taken to Ahmedabad, where she was formally arrested this morning.

She will now be produced in court on July 2 along with her alleged co-conspirator RB Sreekumar who is a retired IPS officer and former Director General of Police (DGP) Gujarat. After the arrest, she was taken to SV Hospital in Ahmedabad for a routine medical check-up before being produced before a judge.

Readers would recall that Setalvad had said that she had been physically assaulted in her home by police personnel yesterday, and had sustained bruises to her left hand. She had also expressed concerns about her safety in a written complaint filed with the Santacruz Police Station where she was taken by the Gujarat ATS team, before she was whisked away to Ahmedabad.

Setalvad has maintained that the manner in which she was arrested was illegal – that she wasn’t even shown the warrant or First Information Report (FIR) till her lawyer arrived. Also curious is how the conspiracy charges materialized just a day after the Supreme Court dismissed a Special Leave Petition (SLP) filed by Zakia Jafri, widow of slain Congress Member of Parliament (MP) Ehsan Jafri who had been brutally killed during the communal violence that broke out in Gulberg Society in 2002. Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP) through its secretary Teesta Setalvad was the second petitioner in the case.

However, in a shocking turn of events, the court, deeming Setalvad’s involvement to be malicious, observed in its judgment, “As a matter of fact, all those involved in such abuse of process, need to be in the dock and proceeded with in accordance with law.

The above extract was also quoted in a complaint filed on behalf of the State by Darshansinh B Barad, Police Inspector, Detection of Crime Branch, Ahmedabad City. In the complaint dated June 25, 2022, Barad asks for an FIR to be registered against Setalvad, former Gujarat Director General of Police (DGP) R.B Sreekumar and former IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt under the following sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC):

194 (Giving or fabricating false evidence with intent to procure conviction of capital offence)

211 (False charge of offence made with intent to injure)

218 (Public servant framing incorrect record or writing with intent to save person from punishment or property from forfei­ture)

468 (Forgery for purpose of cheating)

471 (Using as genuine a forged document or electronic record)

Read with 120 B (Criminal Conspiracy) 

The State’s complaint says that Setalvad, Sreekumar and Bhatt conspired to malign the reputation of senior Gujarat government officials as well as the Special investigation Team (SIT) formed to investigate the communal violence of 2002. The trumped-up charges against Setalvad include conspiracy to fabricate facts and documents, tutor witnesses and bring about a malicious prosecution against the alleged perpetrators of the conspiracy behind the 2002 Gujarat communal violence.

The clearly trumped-up charges have not gone unnoticed by civil society members, with new voices joining the chorus to demand justice for Teesta Setalvad every hour.




Many peaceful protests have been planned by activists, youth groups, trade unions and others in the upcoming days. In fact, one protest was held in Kolkata on the evening of June 26, by members of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) or CPI (M). Politburo member Brinda Karat has come out in support of Setalvad and called her arrest a “very vindictive action” by the regime. She warns that such actions are an “ominous threat to all democratic citizens” who dare to question the role of authorities in the spread of communal violence. Her entire video statement may be viewed here:



In fact, members of another Left Front party, the CPI (ML) Liberation, burnt an effigy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a protest in Jadhavpur in West Bengal.





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