New Delhi: Delhi High Court on Monday reversed the acquittal of the trial court and sentenced senior Congress leader Sajjan Kumar with life imprisonment in the 1984 riots.
The Delhi HC division bench Justices S Muralidhar and Vinod Goel, after hearing the final arguments in the appeals, ordered Kumar to surrender before the court by 31 December.
The 1984 riot case was transferred to Patiala House court from Karkardooma court with the direction of Delhi HC, which directed the district judge to video record the proceedings at the cost of the accused persons.
In this matter, trial court found guilty former Congress councilor Balwan Khokhar, Rtd Naval officer Captain Bhagmal, Girdhari Lal and two others in the case relating to the murder of five members of a family in Raj Nagar area of Delhi Cantonment on November 1, 1984, in the riots that spread after the assassination of the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.
The trial court had acquitted Kumar but awarded the life term to Khokhar, Bhagmal and Lal and a three-year jail term to two former MLA Mahender Yadav and Kishan Khokhar. The convicted persons had challenged the court verdict and sentencing order of the trial court in May 2013.
On November 16 this year, Cham Kaur, a prosecution witness, submitted before the court that she had seen Kumar addressing the crowd in Delhi’s Sultanpuri area in 1984. She further named other persons who were shot dead on the same date by the mob. Another prosecution witness Sheela Kaur had also identified Kumar as the one who had instigated the mob in Sultanpuri area.