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SIT closes 51 of 60 reopened cases in 1984 anti-Sikh riots: Govt to RS

Minister of state for home Hansraj Ahir said the Special Investigation Team has scrutinised records of 293 cases and after scrutiny, a total 60 cases were re-opened for further investigation.

india Updated: Jul 20, 2017 00:05 IST
Rajesh Ahuja
Rajesh Ahuja
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
anti-Sikh riots,Rajya Sabha,SIT
Minister of state for home Hansraj Ahir (HT File Photo)

A special investigation team (SIT) appointed by the Union home ministry has again closed probes into 51 of the 60 cases it had re-opened in connection with the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.

Disclosing this in a written reply before the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday, the government said five of the remaining cases are still under investigation. The SIT has filed charge sheets in the other four.

The government had constituted the SIT in February 2015 to reinvestigate “serious cases” filed in connection with the 1984 riots, wherein over 3,000 people – mostly Sikhs – were lynched in the aftermath of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s assassination. Delhi alone accounted for 2,733 of these deaths.

While 650 cases were registered in connection with the riots, the Delhi police cited lack of evidence to close around 240. The SIT was asked to take a re-look into all these cases.

Minister of state for home Hansraj Ahir told the upper house that the SIT had scrutinised the records of 293 cases and examined over 1,000 witnesses from various parts of the country. “After careful scrutiny, 60 cases were re-opened for further investigation. Of these 60 cases, charge sheets have been filed in four, and further investigation is under progress in five. Fifty-one cases were closed after further investigation was carried out,” he said.

The document did not give out details of the number of accused charge-sheeted in the four “completed” cases.

Ahir went on to clarify that there was no delay on the part of the SIT in completing the probe. “As the records are very old, a large part could not be (examined) despite constant follow-ups with various agencies. The records are very old, and in very bad shape. Several records were in Urdu, and they had to be translated. Many complainants and witnesses were located with great difficulty because they had moved out of their homes. Some had even migrated to foreign countries,” he said.

The minister said the SIT has informed the complainants or their legal heirs about the outcome of the investigation.

First Published: Jul 19, 2017 19:31 IST