Moved by the plight of a Punjab-based widow, whose husband was burnt alive during 1984 anti-Sikh riots in New Delhi, the Delhi High Court has asked the local government to decide her compensation plea within two months.
Allowing the plea of Jasbir Kaur, a resident of Moga district in Punjab, Justice Gita Mittal directed the Sub-divisional Magistrate (SDM) of Kanjhawala, Delhi, to decide her compensation plea after verifying her identity and residential proof.
Buta Singh, a 'granthi' at a Gurudwara in Moga, was burnt alive along with 40 others in a Gurudwara at Haiderpur in north Delhi on November one in 1984 by a mob, which had gone berserk after the assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.
The petition was filed in the High Court following the denial of compensation to Kaur by the city government in 1997.
The Delhi government argued that Kaur had approached it after the lapse of many years and hence her plea could not be entertained.
The bench took strong note of the "callous attitude" of the government saying "Do you expect a poor villager of Punjab, whose husband was lynched, to file a writ petition, that too in time, to get the compensation."
"Why you did not locate her for such a long period?," the court asked, and said: "the detailed order of this court, passed in 1997, has not been followed."
"Have you witnessed the 1984 riots? It was horrible," the bench said, making it clear that the formalities should be completed at the earliest.