A court in News Delhi on Friday refused to accept the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) closure report and ordered the agency to conduct further investigation into the 1984 anti-Sikh riots case against Congress leader Jagdish Tytler. The closure report gives Tytler a clean chit.
Additional chief metropolitan magistrate Saurabh Pratap Singh Laler also directed the CBI to verify the claims of arms dealer Abhishek Verma, cited as a witness in the closure report. Verma had stated before the CBI that Tytler had told him in 2008 that he had got the clean chit after meeting the-then prime minister; and that he had also tried to influence one of the witnesses with a hefty sum and the promise of settling his son abroad.
The CBI is required to also record the statement of other witnesses in the case. During the last hearing, the CBI had submitted that it was prepared to investigate the matter further upon court’s permission. The CBI’s statement came while replying to an application filed by the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) in which it offered to provide the court with the addresses of three material witnesses the agency had earlier claimed to be not traceable.
Advocate HS Phoolka, appearing for complainant Lakhvinder Kaur, whose husband, Badal Singh, was killed during the riots, said that in view of the seriousness of the offence, the court should not accept the closure report. The court was hearing the woman’s petition against the CBI’s closure report — its third — giving a clean chit to Tytler for his alleged role in the violence. Phoolka said the CBI’s investigation was “faulty, tainted, dishonest and perfunctory”.
In April 2013, a sessions court rejected a closure report and ordered the agency to further investigate the killings. The CBI did that but filed another closure report on December 24, 2014, saying there was no sufficient evidence to proceed against Tytler.