‘CBI forced witnesses to depose against me’
Veteran Congress leader Sajjan Kumar, facing trial in a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case, on Thursday alleged in a Delhi court that CBI had "pressurised" the witnesses to depose against him.
Advocate I U Khan, appearing for Sajjan Kumar and continuing final arguments before district judge J R Aryan, said CBI had put pressure over the witnesses to depose that they had seen Kumar allegedly instigating the mob during the riots in Raj Nagar area of Delhi Cantonment here. "CBI had forced several witnesses to give statement against Kumar and when they refused to depose on its line, the agency dropped them. This is a tainted investigation," Khan said.
He referred to the statement of defence witness Baldev Raj Khanna, who had deposed in the court that CBI was putting pressure on him to say that he had seen Kumar and two other co-accused indulging in riot activities.
Khan said Khanna had deposed that one Manoj Pangarkar of CBI had pressurised him to name Kumar but Manoj had told the officer that when he had not seen the former MP in the area, he cannot name him.
Citing statements of several prosecution witnesses, the counsel said that these witnesses were watching the riot activities closely, having knowledge of everything and they in their statements had not taken Kumar's name.
"One of the riot victims and CBI witness Jasbir Kaur, in her statement, had recorded that she had seen the people who were part of the mob and she had stated in her statement to the CBI that she had not seen MP Sajjan Kumar during the riots in the area," Khan said.
Sajjan Kumar is facing trial along with five others—Balwan Khokkar, Kishan Khokkar, Mahender Yadav, Girdhari Lal and Captain Bhagmal —for allegedly inciting a mob against the Sikh community in Delhi Cantonment area here.
The case is related to the anti-Sikh riots that had broken out after the assassination of the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on October 31, 1984.