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1984 Anti-Sikh riots: No issue if SIT works with 2 members, Centre tells SC

Additional solicitor-general Pinky Anand informed the Supreme Court that the three-member SIT, probing cases related to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, had been reduced to two after retired IPS officer Rajdeep Singh declined to be a part of it citing personal reasons.

india Updated: Dec 04, 2018 13:13 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
anti-sikh riots,supreme court,1984 anti-sikh riots
File photo of relatives of 1984 anti-Sikh riots victims during a protest in New Delhi. (AFP File )

The Centre on Monday said it had no objection if the current special investigation team (SIT) – constituted to further probe 186 cases related to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots – continues with its task with just two members.

Additional solicitor-general Pinky Anand informed the court that the three-member SIT had been reduced to two after retired IPS officer Rajdeep Singh declined to be a part of it citing personal reasons.

Anand, representing the Centre, said the government proposed substituting Singh with former DG-rank officer Navneet Rajan Wasan, who had earlier served as the Director General of Bureau of Police Research and Development.

The bench, however, said the government cannot “choose its own judge.” “Give us two to three names,” Justice Lokur said. At this, senior advocates HS Phoolka and RS Suri, appearing for the petitioners, suggested letting the SIT continue its probe with two members.

“The team is already there. Non-appointment of the third member is halting the probe. We request the court to let the SIT proceed with two members, Justice Dhingra and Dular,” Phoolka said. Anand said she had no objection to the suggestion.

Since the original order setting up the SIT was by a three-judge bench, the court said it would take up the matter again on Tuesday when a similar combination will sit.

The SC had on January 11 nominated a three-member to supervise a further probe into the 186 cases, in which closure reports had been filed earlier.

On February 5, the Centre had moved court, requesting it to include Wasan instead of Singh. Wasan, now retired, is a 1980-batch Andhra Pradesh-cadre officer and had also served as Special Director General in the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

First Published: Dec 04, 2018 13:12 IST