1984 riots: ‘Delhi Police destroying case records’

A Delhi court hearing a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case said a two-minute silence will be observed before commencement of everyday`s proceedings.

New Delhi: In an unusual decision, a Delhi
court hearing a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case involving senior
Congress leader Sajjan Kumar on Monday said a two-minute silence
will be observed before commencement of everyday`s proceedings
in memory of the innocent people killed in the carnage.

The court also said "hundreds of murders" had taken place
during the riots which were "never investigated or tried".

"Hundreds of murders that took place during the riots
were never investigated or tried. Before the hearing resumes
in the case, maintain silence for two minutes as so many
people were killed during the riots.

"The description of the incidents given by the witnesses
itself show how painful it was for them (victims) as so many
innocents were killed," District Judge JR Aryan said.

The judge, who is hearing the final arguments in the riot
case in which Kumar has been accused of instigating a mob in
Delhi Cantonment area here, said everyone present in the court
room during the proceedings will observe two minutes` silence
for the "innocent" people who were killed during the riots.

The CBI was advancing the final arguments in the case in
which six Sikhs were allegedly killed in Delhi Cantonment area
during the riots that had broken out after the assassination
of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on October 31, 1984.

The arguments remained inconclusive and would continue

CBI prosecutor and senior advocate RS Cheema blamed the
Delhi Police for fabricating and destroying the case records.

Cheema told the court that as per the police records, it
had recorded two statements of prosecution witness Jagdish
Kaur in 1985 and 1992 in which she had refused to identify the
accused including Sajjan Kumar but according to the witness
and the CBI`s probe, she had not deposed before the police
during that time.

"Delhi Police had fabricated the record and Jagdish Kaur
had not deposed before it in 1985 and 1992. The two statements
were wrong," Cheema said.

He also argued that as per CBI`s investigation, Jagdish
Kaur had recorded a statement before the police on November 3,
1984 where she had named several persons including Sajjan
Kumar and two other accused in the case but that deposition
was destroyed and missing from the police records.

The prosecutor cited statements of prosecution witnesses
who had identified the accused in the court and had also
deposed about their presence during the riot incidents.

Showing direct evidence against the accused, he said the
statements of witnesses showed the presence of Sajjan Kumar
and other accused during riots.

Earlier, the CBI had argued that the Delhi Police acted
in a pre-planned manner during the riots and kept its "eyes
closed" to the violence.

He had said 150 complaints were made regarding the riot
incidents but only five FIRs were registered by the police.

Cheema had said that whatever action was taken by the
police was taken against the people who helped the Sikhs.

Sajjan Kumar and other five accused Kishan Khokkar,
Girdhari Lal, Mahender Yadav, Balwan Khokkar and Captain
Bhagmal are facing trial for allegedly instigating the mob to
kill the Sikhs during the 1984 riots.

The case against Sajjan Kumar was registered in 2005 on a
recommendation by Justice G T Nanavati Commission. The CBI had
filed two charge sheets against him and THE other accused in
January 2010.

The trial court had in May 2010 framed charges against
Sajjan Kumar and five others under Sections 302 (murder), 395
(dacoity), 427 (mischief to cause damage to property), 153-A
(promoting enmity between different communities) and other
provisions of the IPC.

Sajjan Kumar is facing prosecution in three separate
cases in which he has been accused of inciting a mob against
the Sikh community during the riots.