Demanding re-opening of cases related to killing of 127 people during the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, the Sikh community has threatened exodus from Kanpur to Punjab from January 1.
A total of 127 people had died during 1984 riots in Kanpur. “The state government must act fast on the cases,” said chairman of the All India Riot Victim Relief Committee and office-bearer of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee Kuldeep Singh Bhogal.
“People know about the killers in Delhi, here no one knows,” said Bhogal. Kanpur was second worst-hit by riots recording maximum deaths after Delhi. In all the cases the police have filed closure reports for want of evidence.
“The Samajwadi Party has been in power the most of the time after Congress and the BSP in Uttar Pradesh. None of the government cared to get justice to the families of 127 people who were brutally murdered,” he said.
The Rangnath Mishra Commission that investigated the riots puts the casualty at 127 while the community says more than 300 were killed.
“If the cases aren’t reopened at the earliest, the Sikhs will begin moving out of Kanpur and may settle in Punjab,” he said. “Closure reports in all the cases stir nothing but suspicion.”
In the first phase, five families would go to Punjab and meet the chief minister showing the world that Uttar Pradesh wasn’t for them. “All the cases should be re-opened by December 31 and the government of the day should ensure the killers are arrested,” he said.
Head of Gurdwara Banno Sahib Mohkam Singh issued a white paper on the compensation and government orders issued.
More than 30 women, who lost their husbands in the riots, were given Rs 11,000 each. The DGPC pays these victims Rs 1,000 every month as pension. The Sikh leaders also lambasted the jail minister Balwant Singh Ramoowalia. They said he was imported from Punjab and if he could not help the riot victims he would have to face opposition back in his home state.
The relief committee’s office-bearers met the additional city magistrate -7 and handed him a memorandum about reopening of cases and compensation that hasn’t been paid to 200 people.