I objected to Tytler, Sajjan's candidature: Pranab
External Affairs Minister and senior Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee today said he had objected to the nomination of Jagdish Tytler and Sajjan Kumar as Congress candidates for the Lok Sabha polls when the issue of the 1984 ani-Sikh riots again came to the fore. Special: My India My Voteindia Updated: Apr 11, 2009 23:49 IST
Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee on Saturday said he had objected to the nomination of Jagdish Tytler and Sajjan Kumar as Congress candidates for the Lok Sabha polls when the issue of the 1984 ani-Sikh riots again came to the fore.
'I had objected when the issue came to the fore. Some said we should ignore it. I said that's not right,' Mukherjee said during an interactive programme on Bengali news channel Star Ananda.
Tytler and Sajjan Kumar, originally named as Congress Lok Sabha contestants from Delhi, were pulled out of the race after a journalist Jarnail Singh hurled his shoe at union Home Minister P. Chidambaram in protest against the clean chit given by the Central Bureau of Investigation to Tytler in a 1984 riots case.
Both have been accused of having incited mobs to attack Sikhs in the riots that followed then prime minister Indira Gandhi's assassination in 1984 by two of her Sikh bodyguards.
Both have denied their involvement in the riots, which left more than 3,000 Sikhs dead.
Jarnail Singh's action triggered massive agitations by Sikhs in Delhi and Punjab demanding the denial of tickets to Tytler and Sajjan Kumar.
Asked whether the party had any inkling of the strong reaction that their candidature would evoke, Mukherjee said: 'It's not that we didn't have any such inkling. But we thought since they have been Lok Sabha MPs for the last five years, the discontent against them had died down.'