Breaking his long, self-imposed silence on the anti-Sikh riots, Congress MP Sajjan Kumar on Tuesday said that the 1984 massacre of the Sikhs was a non-issue in upcoming elections.
“It will not have an impact in the polls, and certainly not in the South Delhi constituency,” Kumar told reporters.
Sajjan Kumar’s (64) ticket to contest from the South Delhi constituency was revoked by Congress after widespread protests by the Sikh community with allegations that Kumar was “actively involved” in 1984’s anti-Sikh riots. On Tuesday, he was canvassing for his brother Ramesh Kumar, who got the ticket instead.
In a lighter vein, Kumar said, “I have authorised my colleague Jagdish Tytler (Congress leader whose ticket from Northeast Delhi, too, was revoked after protests) to do all the talking on this issue.”
Ramesh Kumar (53) is seen as a compromise candidate to prevent Sajjan Kumar’s dissent and also capitalise on the latter’s political clout in South Delhi.
On Tuesday, Kumar was at pains explaining in South Delhi the name of the Congress candidate would hardly matter. “Who is contesting does not matter so long as he from the iCongress,” he said.
Kumar claimed ever since his candidature was announced for South Delhi, those who had voted for the BSP in November’s Assembly elections had made up their minds on voting for Congress. “Ramesh Bidhuri ( BJP candidate from South Delhi) had won from Tughlaqabad because of feud between Congress workers. That has been resolved, and we will get huge votes from even there.”
On speculations his political career was heading for an abrupt sunset, Kumar said, “People have written me off again and again. Every time Sajjan Kumar has come back with a bang,” he said.