Special Investigation Team reopens seven 1984 anti-Sikh riot cases

PTI

File photo: Ministry of Home Affairs

File photo: Ministry of Home Affairs

A Special Investigation Team (SIT), set up by the Union Home Ministry, has decided to reopen seven anti-Sikh riot cases, where the accused were either acquitted or the trial closed, according to an official notification.

According to the Home Ministry notification, the SIT has taken up the discharged cases for scrutiny or preliminary enquiry.

The seven anti-Sikh riot cases were registered in 1984 at police stations in Vasant Vihar, Sun Light Colony, Kalyanpuri, Parliament Street, Connaught Place, Patel Nagar and Shahdara.

The SIT has issued public notices asking individuals and organisations to provide information related to the seven cases.

“This is to inform to all individuals, groups of persons, associations, institutions and organisations that if they have any information in respect of any of the cases, they may contact the officer in-charge of SIT police station,” the SIT said.

The SIT was set up on February 12, 2015 following a recommendation by the Home Ministry-appointed Justice (retd) G P Mathur committee.

The three-member SIT comprises two Inspector General-rank IPS officers and a judicial officer.

The SIT has so far re-opened around 80 out of the 650 cases registered in connection with anti-Sikh riots following the assassination of the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. Gandhi was shot dead by her Sikh bodyguards on October 31, 1984.

A total of 3,325 people were killed in the riots in which Delhi alone accounted for 2,733 deaths, while the rest occurred in Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and other states.

The Delhi Police had closed 241 cases citing lack of evidence. Justice Nanavati Commission had recommended reopening of only four of them but the Modi government constituted the SIT for re-investigation of all cases which the probe team finds appropriate.

The CBI had reopened and re-investigated only four cases. In two of them, the probe agency had filed a charge sheet and in one, five persons, including a former MLA, were convicted.

Last year, Congress leader Sajjan Kumar was sentenced to life for his role in the anti-Sikh riots.

On December 10, 2014, the Narendra Modi government had announced an additional compensation of Rs five lakh to the kin of each of those killed in the 1984 riots.

In May, 2016, the Home Ministry had announced that 1,020 families, which had been hit by the riots and migrated to Punjab from different parts of the country, will be given Rs two lakh each as part of a centrally-sponsored rehabilitation scheme.

(PTI)