The Delhi High Court on Monday sought the response of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and two convicts on a plea filed by kin of victims challenging their acquittal of murder charges in an anti-Sikh riot case.
A bench of justices GS Sistani and GP Mittal sought CBI’s response by August 27 on the appeal of Jagdish Kaur and Nirpreet Kaur who have challenged the trial court’s April 30 order acquitting ex-MLA Mahender Yadav and Kishan Khokkar from the charges of murder.
Congress leader Sajjan Kumar’s acquittal in the riots case has also been challenged in the high court by the victims which is likely to come up for hearing on Wednesday.
The bench also issued notice to the agency on another plea by the victims who are also seeking enhancement of the life sentence, awarded to Balwan Khokkar, Girdhari Lal and Captain Bhagmal, to death penalty for the charge of murder.
The bench also called for the trial court record in the case on the next date of hearing.
The trial court on April 30 had acquitted Sajjan Kumar, a former Lok Sabha MP from Outer Delhi, but convicted five others — Balwan Khokkar, an ex-councillor, Mahender Yadav, an ex-MLA, Kishan Khokkar, Girdhari Lal and Captain Bhagmal — for their involvement in the case.
While Balwan Khokkar, Lal and Bhagmal were convicted for murder and rioting and awarded life term, Yadav and Kishan Khokkar were convicted only for rioting and handed down three years’ jail term.
Filing the petitions through their counsel H S Phoolka, the victims, who also sought compensation, said the April 30 verdict is “erroneous” as the trial court failed to appreciate the evidence against the convicts.