Delhi High Court stays Sajjan Trial in 1984 Riot case

Delhi High Court stays Sajjan Trial in 1984 Riot case

The Delhi High Court issued a stay till the next date of hearing on October 12th, on the ongoing trial of Congress leader Sajjan Kumar in a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case after a plea sought transfer of the case to a different Judge.

The plea field by two main complainants in the case arising out of a massacre in Sultanpuri area alleges evidence was not being recorded properly by the Court of the District and Sessions Judge Kamlesh Kumar.

The Court issued notice to Sajjan Kumar and the Central Bureau of Investigation to file replies on the victims' plea.

According to the transfer petition filed before the bench of Justice Siddharth Mridul, the presiding Judge was “interpreting” the statements being made by witnesses, instead of recording the statements directly. The issue arose during the trial court hearing when witness Sheela Kaur was giving her testimony in Punjabi and Hindi.

Justice Siddharth Mridul, who also issued notice to the Central Bureau of Investigation and accused Congress leader Sajjan Kumar on the plea by complainant Joginder Singh, said "transfer of the case is imperative for meeting the ends of justice".

The complainant's contention was supported by senior advocate H S Phoolka, who through an affidavit supporting the petition and also claimed when he had objected that the witness' statement was not being correctly recorded by the court, he was told that he has no right to raise objections being the victim's counsel.

He also said the deposition of the witness that "mai Sajjan Kumar ko pahchanti hoon, woh court me maujood hai" was recorded as "I can identify him (Kumar), if he is present in court today".

Sajjan Kumar, Brahmanand Gupta and Ved Prakash are facing trial in connection with the killing of men during the riots that erupted after then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was assassinated by her security guards.

The Court framed various charges, including those of murder and rioting, against them.

The CBI filed two charge sheets against Sajjan Kumar and the others in January 2010 in riots cases registered in 2005 on the recommendation of the Justice G.T. Nanavati Commission, which had probed the sequence of events leading to the violence.