1984 riots: Court to consider closure report on April 22

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New Delhi: A Delhi court on Friday fixed April 22 for hearing CBI’s closure report in a case against Congress leader Jagdish Tytler in connection with the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.

The hearing could not take place today as Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (ACMM) Saurabh Pratap Singh Laler was not holding court.

The magistrate is in Lucknow from March 20-28 for training purpose.

The court had earlier issued notice on the closure report to the complainant and victim, Lakhvinder Kaur, whose husband Badal Singh was killed during the riots, for today.

Advocate Kamna Vohra, appearing for Kaur, however, claimed that the victim has not yet been served the notice.

The court had earlier said “perusal of records revealed that the cancellation report was also filed earlier as regards accused Jagdish Tytler”.

This was the third time that Tytler was given a clean chit in the case by the investigating agency.

CBI had said it has conducted further probe in the case, as directed by a sessions court, and filed a closure report in the matter.

In April 2013, CBI was directed by a sessions court to further investigate the case as it set aside its earlier closure report.

Expressing displeasure over the CBI’s move of filing the closure report, senior advocate H S Phoolka, representing the riot victims, had said, “Why is it being done so secretly? Even the complainant has not been informed about it. It has been filed secretly.”

“This shows an attempt has been made to get the closure report accepted by the court in hush-hush manner.”

He had said the closure report was filed on December 24, 2014 and he had come to know about it only now and that too, unofficially, through another lawyer, while the victim has not been informed till then.

The sessions court on April 10, 2013 had set aside CBI’s closure report giving clean chit to Tytler and ordered reopening of investigation into the killing of three persons.

CBI had earlier opposed the plea for further probe. The court had found fault in the investigation by the agency which had not examined the available witnesses.

The court’s 2013 order had come on a plea by the riot victims against the CBI giving a clean chit to Tytler and filing a closure report.

The victims had sought the court’s direction to the CBI to further probe the case to ascertain Tytler’s alleged role in the riots.

The CBI had, however, sought dismissal of the victim’s plea saying the probe has made it clear that Tytler was not present on November 1, 1984 at Gurudwara Pulbangash in  North Delhi where three people were killed during the riots and was rather at Teen Murti Bhawan, where Indira Gandhi’s body was lying in state.

Tytler’s alleged role in the case relating to the killing of three persons — Badal Singh, Thakur Singh and Gurcharan Singh — near Gurudwara Pulbangash was re-investigated by the CBI after a court had in December 2007 refused to accept its closure report.

Another accused Suresh Kumar Paniwala, who faced trial for the offences of murder and inciting the mob during the riots, was acquitted by a Delhi court in 2014.

CBI had again given a clean chit to Tytler on April 2, 2009 claiming lack of evidence against him in the case pertaining to the murder of three persons on November 1, 1984, in the aftermath of the assassination of Indira Gandhi.

However, on April 27, 2010, a magistrate had accepted CBI’s closure report in the case against Tytler, saying there was no evidence to put him on trial.

Some of the witnesses had alleged that during the riots, Tytler was instigating the mob to kill Sikhs, a charge strongly refuted by him.

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