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Court in India clears government leader of charges in religious bloodshed

Catholic World News - April 11, 2012

A court in India has absolved the chief minister of the Gujarat state of all responsibility for the religious violence that resulted in over 1,000 deaths ten years ago.

After Muslim extremists attacked participants in a Hindu pilgrimage on February 27, 2002, Hindu zealots retaliated with a spree of violence, aimed primarily at Muslims in Gujarat. Narendra Modi, the state’s chief executive, was charged by Muslim survivors with encouraging the violence, or at a minimum failing to mobilize police to stop the bloodshed. But a court has now cleared Modi, and 58 other defendants, of conspiracy charges.

Father Cedric Prakash, a human-rights activist in Gujarat, reports that the investigation into the charges was profoundly flawed, and the final verdict is a profound disappointment to those hoping for justice in the troubled Indian state.

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