The Supreme Court on Tuesday observed that the response filed by the Gujarat government to the plea challenging the release of eleven convicts in Bilkis Bano gang rape case, is very bulky. .A bench of Justices Ajay Rastogi and CT Ravikumar made the observation while directing the government to serve the State's counter-affidavit on all parties."It is a very big reply....So many judgments in a reply. Where is the factual statement, where is the application of mind," the Court orally remarked."It could have been avoided, I agree.. but the idea was to have easy reference," Solicitor General Tushar Mehta responded."Let counter be made available to all lawyers. List matters on November 29, 2022," the Court directed..The Gujarat government had recently granted remission to 11 convicts who had gangraped Bilkis Bano and murdered her family members during the 2002 Godhra riots.The 11 convicts who have been set free are Jaswant Nai, Govind Nai, Shailesh Bhatt, Radhyesham Shah, Bipin Chandra Joshi, Kesarbhai Vohania, Pradeep Mordhiya, Bakabhai Vohania, Rajubhai Soni, Mitesh Bhatt and Ramesh Chandana.The petition before the top court was filed by CPI(M) leader Subhasini Ali, independent journalist and filmmaker Revati Laul and former philosophy professor and activist Roop Rekh Varma.The Supreme Court had, on August 25, sought the response of the Gujarat government and the 11 convicts to the plea..In its counter-affidavit, the Gujarat government said that it decided to release all the eleven convicts in the case as per a 1992 remission policy since they completed more than 14 years in prison and their behaviour was found to be good.It further said that the Union Ministry of Home Affairs had approved their release. The affidavit also revealed that the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the trial court which heard the case, had opposed the Gujarat government's proposal to release the eleven. Pertinently, the government questioned the locus of the petitioners, stating that third parties cannot file petitions in a matter between State, convicts and survivor.