CBI's case against Congress leader Sajjan Kumar in a 1984 anti-Sikh riot case today suffered a setback in a Delhi court as a prosecution witness in the trial against him turned hostile, claiming he had not given shelter to one of the victims during the riots.
"It is incorrect to suggest that Jagsher Singh alias Golu had also taken shelter in my house during that period or that I stated so in my statement (before CBI)," Ram Avtar Sharma, prosecution witness, told Additional Sessions Judge Sunita Gupta.
"Had he taken shelter in my house, then I must have mentioned this fact in my statement because he was known to me," the witness added "voluntarily".
In his cross-examination by CBI, Sharma, 49, testified that he was not making a false statement under pressure from Kumar. "It is incorrect to suggest that I have been pressurised by accused Kumar to resile from my statement.
It is further incorrect to suggest that I have, in collusion with the accused, introduced the fact of Jagdish Kaur having taken shelter in our house in order to damage the prosecution case," he deposed.
He said "it is also incorrect that I knew the name of Jagsher Singh alias Golu very clearly and I buckled under pressure to deny that I knew his name Jagsher Singh and further obliged the accused by denying that he took shelter in our house during the riots."
CBI had claimed Jagsher had taken shelter in the house of Sharma at Raj Nagar here during the riots that followed the assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on October 31, 1984. Out of total of three witnesses, Sharma is the second to turned hostile during the trial.