The Delhi High Court on Monday convicted Congress leader Sajjan Kumar and sentenced him to life imprisonment in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. Kumar was held guilty for killing five Sikhs in Delhi’s cantonment area following the assassination of then prime minister Indira Gandhi by her Sikh bodyguards. While pronouncing the judgment, the Delhi High Court observed that the mass killings of Sikhs between November 1 and 4, 1984 in Delhi and the rest of the country in the aftermath of Indira Gandhi’s assassination was “carnage of unbelievable proportions”.
“What happened in the aftermath of the assassination of the then PM was carnage of unbelievable proportions in which over 2,700 Sikhs were murdered in Delhi alone. Law and order clearly broke down and it was literally a free for all situation. Aftershocks of that still being felt,” the High Court observed.
The Delhi High Court acknowledged that the mass killings were engineered by political actors and law enforcement agencies were also part of it. The court said that the brutal killing of Sikhs was a description of "crimes against humanity‟.
“The mass killings of Sikhs between November 1 and 4, 1984 in Delhi and the rest of the country, engineered by political actors with the assistance of the law enforcement agencies, answer the description of "crimes against humanity,” the High Court said.
Speaking about the case against Sajjan Kumar, the court said that it was almost impossible to book the Congress leader in normal scheme of things as efforts were made at a very large-scale to supresses charges against him.
Sajjan Kumar has been asked to surrender before the CBI by the end of this year. The court had also ordered him not to leave Delhi and National Capital Territory (NCT) till the time he surrenders.
“Sajjan Kumar shall not from this moment till his surrender leave the NCT of Delhi and shall immediately provide to the CBI the address and mobile number(s) where he can be contacted,” the court judgment read.
A bench of Delhi High Court comprising Justices S Muralidhar and Vinod Goel held Kumar guilty of killing five Sikhs in Delhi’s cantonment area following the assassination of Indira Gandhi and sentenced to life imprisonment.