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HindustanTimes Fri,28 Nov 2014

1984 riots: Court tears into police ‘silence, inaction’

Harish V Nair, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, May 01, 2013
First Published: 23:58 IST(1/5/2013) | Last Updated: 02:04 IST(2/5/2013)

The court that acquitted Congress leader Sajjan Kumar and convicted five others in one of the 1984 anti-Sikh riots cases slammed the police for its “silence and inaction” despite appearing to be privy to the incidents.

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In his 129-page judgment made public on Wednesday, Additional Sessions judge JR Aryan termed the police silence as a serious lapse.

“From the evidence and material available in this case,...these facts and circumstances do suggest that law supervising and enforcing machinery i.e.(Delhi) police maintained complete silence during those two days i.e. November 1 and 2, 1984,” Additional Sessions Judge JR Aryan said in his judgment.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/Images/Popup/2013/5/02-05-pg2a.jpg

During the hearing, the CBI had called the riots a “clear conspiracy” to target Sikhs. It had said there was a “nexus between the police and local politicians” to shield the perpetrators.

“Court can take judicial notice of the fact available from (the) Justice Nanavati Commission report that there were as many 341 killings in police station Delhi Cantt area itself and the present case concerning killing of five persons was in the area of Rajnagar, a part of police station Delhi Cantt. It has come in evidence from document, the DDR, maintained at police station Palam Colony that not a single incident of any killing or any property destroyed was recorded by the police,” the court said (sic).

The CBI had also contended there was a conspiracy of “terrifying proportions” between Kumar and Delhi Police during the riots.

Victims’ lawyerspeak

Reacting to the stinging comments, senior advocate HS Phoolka said charges of conniving with unnamed police officers and killing Sikhs were framed against the accused. He said the CBI probe also showed the police did not record the statements of witnesses who named Kumar.

“This being the situation, it was highly erroneous for the trial court to have ignored this aspect.”

He said while examining Sajjan Kumar’s role, the trial court did not consider that aspect of the CBI investigation which showed that Jagdish Kaur’s statement of November 3, 1984, was removed from the records by Delhi Police.

“The trial court failed to consider that the CBI investigation had revealed that Delhi Police were shielding Sajjan Kumar. The failure of the court to consider these aspects makes it a very good case for appeal,” said Phoolka.


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