BJP president Amit Shah told a special court on Monday that former Gujarat minister Maya Kodnani was at the state assembly and later at a government hospital the day deadly riots broke out in parts of Ahmedabad in February, 2002.

Shah appeared as a defence witness for Kodnani, who is accused of inciting a mob that killed 11 people in the city’s Naroda Gam area on February 28, 2002. She has already been convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment in connection with a separate case of rioting in Ahmedabad’s Naroda Patiya area.

Shah told the court that on February 28 he left the assembly building in Gandhinagar for Sola Civil Hospital in Ahmedabad, where the bodies of the victims of the train fire had been brought. He said Kodnani was also present there.

“Mayaben Kodnani was not at Naroda Gam but at the State Assembly at 8.30 am. From 9.30 am to 9.45 am, I was at the Civil Hospital and I met Maya Kodnani there,” Shah was quoted as saying by news agency IANS.

The BJP president said police escorted him and Kodnani to a safe place after agitated crowds surrounded them at the hospital. He then said he didn’t know where Kodnani went from there, news agency PTI reported.

Reference: Hindustan Times, ANI