The Delhi High Court today upheld a trial court order granting anticipatory bail to Congress leader Sajjan Kumar in two anti-Sikh riots cases of 1984.
Justice Anu Malhotra disallowed the plea by the Special Investigation Team (SIT), probing the riots cases, seeking to cancel the anticipatory bail of Kumar, saying that according to records, he was available throughout the investigation.
“The available records indicate that pursuant of the orders (of the trial court), Sajjan Kumar has made himself available for investigation and it has been submitted on his behalf that he shall continue to do so,” the court said in its 132-page order.
It, however, said that Kumar will not ask for a questionnaire from the SIT to answer to its queries during investigation, subject to protection enshrined under the Constitution.
The court directed him to comply with all the conditions imposed on him by the trial court at the time of granting him anticipatory bail.
It also said that the SIT was not able to make out any ground for cancellation of anticipatory bail granted to Kumar.
“On consideration of the totality of circumstances put forth, it is held that presently there are no grounds made out by the petitioner (SIT) for cancellation of anticipatory bail granted to Kumar on December 21, 2016,” the court added.
It, however, allowed the SIT's plea to expunge certain adverse remarks made against it by the trial court in the bail order, saying the lower court could not have pre-judged the issues involved.
The high court had on December 12 last year reserved its order on the SIT’s plea seeking cancellation of anticipatory bail. The SIT had contended that the trial court order granting anticipatory bail to Kumar was “perverse” and overwhelming circumstances were ignored.
The Congress leader was granted anticipatory bail by the trial court on December 21, 2016 in two cases of killing of three Sikhs during the riots which had occurred after the assassination of then prime minister Indira Gandhi.
Kumar had submitted that his name was never taken earlier and it was a case of fresh allegations coming up after 32 years which was not allowed.
There two cases filed against Kumar fall in the jurisdictions of Janakpuri and Vikaspuri police stations in West Delhi.
The complaint in Janakpuri pertains to the killing of two Sikhs, Sohan Singh and his son-in-law Avtar Singh, on November 1, 1984 and in the other, where another Sikh, Gurcharan Singh, was burnt on November 2, 1984 in the jurisdiction of Vikaspuri police station. Gurcharan, who was half burnt, had remained bed-ridden for 29 years. He died three years ago.
In January, the Supreme Court appointed former Delhi High Court judge S N Dhingra as chairman of its Special Investigation Team, to further investigate 186 riot cases which were closed by the earlier SIT.
The government SIT was set up on February 12, 2015, following a recommendation by the Home Ministry-appointed Justice (retd) G P Mathur committee, to reinvestigate 'serious cases' filed in Delhi relating to riots that followed the assassination of Indira Gandhi.