Delhi HC upholds conviction of 88 accused in Anti-Sikh riots

The Delhi High court today upheld the the conviction of 88 people by a trial court in connection with 1984 anti-Sikh riots in East Delhi’s Trilokpuri area. Justice R K Gauba directed all the convicts to surrender within four weeks.

The convicts had challenged the August 27, 1996 judgement of a Sessions Court which had convicted 88 out of the 107 people arrested on November 2, 1984 for rioting, burning houses and curfew violation in Trilokpuri area of East Delhi. Last week, a Delhi court awarded death sentence to an accused and life imprisonment to another in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots case.

Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad expressing satisfaction over the verdict, said the probe carried out by a Special Investigation Team (SIT) set up by the Narendra Modi government led to the sentencing. He said that people needed to be told that the Congress had, during its rule, tried to ensure that the Sikh riot victims did not get justice.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley wrote a blog condemning Congress after a Delhi court awarded the death sentence to one individual in the anti-Sikh 1984 riots case. In the blog, Jaitley said Congressmen lead ‘groups of mourners and protesters shouting khoon ka badla khoon’ which was showed on Doordarshan continuously. He added in the aftermath, Congress tried to ‘misrepresent facts’.

Earlier Congress President Rahul Gandhi had said that “Congress was not involved in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots”, in which nearly 3,000 Sikhs were killed, mostly in the national capital when the party`s government was in power at the Centre. His statement drew harsh criticism from members of the BJP.

Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amrinder Singh, however, defended Gandhi and said that a few party leaders could have been involved at an individual level during the riots. The Punjab chief minister even named some Congress leaders, whose names he had heard at camps after the riots.

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