Rajnath calls 1984 riots 'genocide', asks CMs to disburse relief to victims
Hours after assuring that justice will prevail against those guilty, Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday wrote to all Chief Ministers to take steps for immediate disbursement of compensation of Rs 5 lakh to the kin of 1984 anti-Sikh riot victims.
New Delhi: Hours after assuring that justice will prevail against those guilty, Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday wrote to all Chief Ministers to take steps for immediate disbursement of compensation of Rs 5 lakh to the kin of 1984 anti-Sikh riot victims.
Describing the anti-Sikh riots of 1984 as a "genocide", Rajnath said several persons who had a "role" in the carnage are yet to be punished.
"It was not riot, it was genocide instead. Hundreds of innocent people were killed. The pain of the kin of riot victims cannot be compensated by even paying crores of rupees," Rajnath said after distributing cheques of enhanced compensation to the riot victims in Tilak Vihar area of west Delhi.
"In these incidents (anti-Sikh riots), there are several persons who are yet to be punished. I have faith in our judicial system and these persons will definitely get punishment."
"I know that until these persons are punished, victims will not get relief. I want to assure that government is with you and will be with you in even bad days," Singh said.
The Union minister distributed cheques of Rs 5 lakh to 17 kin of the riot victims at a function here.
According to a senior government official, enhanced compensation to 2,459 people will soon be given after a verification.
Singh also said that he has constituted a committee under a retired judge to look into the grievances of victims of 1984 riots.
"I want to assure that after getting complaints through this committee, government will solve them," he said.
The Centre had recently announced to provide additional Rs 5 lakh compensation to the kin of Sikhs killed in 1984 riots.
Singh said that he wanted to give its credit to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Meanwhile, some kin of the riot victims said they want the culprits to be punished instead of the compensation.
"My pain cannot be reduced by money and I want to see culprits being punished. Even after 30 years, main culprits are roaming free," 70-year-old Amarjeet, whose husband Satnam was killed in the riots, said after receiving the cheque from the Union Minister.
"We cannot expect anything from the government. These riots took place in 1984, but the justice is yet to prevail.
"I don't want money but justice," Bakshish Kaur, whose husband was also killed in the riots.
(With agency inputs)