An unused railway coach was set ablaze on Sunday, 3 March, during the enactment of the 2002 Godhra training burning incident for a documentary on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The coach, which a Western Railway official called a ‘mock drill bogie’, was set on fire though instructions to the documentary film crew was that it was to be returned after shooting in the same condition as it was provided.
" “The coach provided for the documentary was an unutilised mock drill bogie. It was given to the crew with the stipulation it would be returned in the same condition that it was given. We have charged money for its use.”" - Khemraj Meena, Vadodara Railway Division spokesperson
The Godhra train burning scene was shot at WR's Pratapnagar station and a set was built for it near the Coach Care Centre there, said the documentary's director Umesh Shukla.
The producers of the documentary had been given four-day permission for shooting on the broad and narrow gauge routes in Pratapnagar and Vishwamitri stations, Meena said.
Monday is the last day for shooting at WR stations, he added. Jayraj Gadhvi, supervising executive of the shoot in Gujarat, said the coach was used to shoot the train burning scene from outside.
The enactment of the scenes that took place inside the coach during the 2002 Godhra incident will be shot at a set constructed for the purpose in Mumbai, Gandhvi added.
According to The Indian Express, the Western Railway CPRO Ravindra Bhakar stated that script produced before him by the film’s production company did not mention ‘Godhra’.
"“The permission was granted almost a week back and as far as I’m aware they wanted to recreate the PM selling tea on railway platforms. When we go through the script we do not permit anything that harms the image of Railways and the country. If they have set fire to a rolling stock or damaged railway property, then we can claim their deposit, claim insurance etc. We make them sign indemnity bond as well,” " - Ravindra BhakarWestern Railway CPRO
Fifty-nine 'karsevaks' were killed in the Godhra train burning incident of 27 February 2002, triggering the worst communal riots in the history of Gujarat in which over 1,000 people, mostly belonging to the minority community, were killed. Prime Minister Narendra Modi was Gujarat chief minister at that time.
(With Inputs from PTI and The Indian Express)
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