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HindustanTimes Wed,17 Sep 2014

1984 riots: AAP govt to recommend SIT probe

HT correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, February 06, 2014
First Published: 21:57 IST(6/2/2014) | Last Updated: 23:01 IST(6/2/2014)

The Aam Aadmi Party government in Delhi on Thursday decided to recommend to lieutenant governor Najeeb Jung to set up a special investigation team (SIT) to probe the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.

"We have decided to recommend to the lieutenant governor to form a SIT on the killing of Sikhs in 1984 riots. This is a blot on the history of India," Delhi education minister Manish Sisodia told reporters.

British foreign secretary William Hague’s statement that a military adviser from his country was consulted about the 1984 operation to flush out Sikh militants from Amritsar's Golden Temple has given the government the required evidence to order an investigation, said Sisodia.

“The actual numbers of deaths were way higher than the official records and so were the numbers of FI Rs. Many of which cases were closed down,” he said.

“This issue has been raised a number of times but nothing significant has been done till date. Justice has been denied to the families of the victims,” he added.

He said “it has also been said the police tampered with the records and the reason for it was dirty politics”.

“Therefore, this time the policemen working on this case would not be from Delhi,” he said, adding, the FIRs that were closed will be reopened and fresh FIRs would be filed if necessary.

“Within a year the whole matter will come into light,” Sisodia said.

After Hague made his statement, the British Government faced a voting backlash by 430,000 Sikhs residing in Britain.

Investigations into the claims made in the documents, accidentally released under the 30-year-rule by the National Archives, revealed that a UK military adviser had recommended the use of helicopters in a surprise attack to cut down on deaths, during the 1984 operation Blue Star.

The British government had said the India did not act on the advice of their military experts as it had carried out ground assault.

A good number of the Sikh population in Britain, said to play key roles in marginal seats at the next election, are feeling a sense of betrayal after the investigations confirmed the news, the Independent reported.

Meanwhile, British Prime Minister David Cameron, addressing the Sikh community in a video message, said that he hoped that the manner in which the investigations were carried out into the dreadful events will provide some reassurance to the Sikh community in Britain and elsewhere.


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