1984 Anti-Sikh Riots: SC Seeks CBI Response on Ex-Congress Councillor Balwan Khokhar’s Plea

Anti Sikh Riots

 The Supreme Court on Friday sought a response from the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) regarding a plea for furlough by former Congress councillor Balwan Khokhar, who is serving a life sentence in a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case.

While issuing notice to the CBI, a bench comprising Justices JK Maheshwari and Sanjay Karol stated that it may direct the competent authority to decide on the matter.

Counsel representing Khokhar mentioned that he is seeking furlough to maintain social ties.

The bench scheduled further hearing on the matter for April.

Apart from Khokhar, former Congress MP Sajjan Kumar is also serving a life sentence in the case. Ex-MLA Mahender Yadav, who was sentenced to 10 years, passed away from Covid in Mandoli jail.

Both Sajjan Kumar and Balwan Khokhar have been lodged in Tihar jail since their conviction on December 17, 2018.

Khokhar’s life sentence was affirmed by the Delhi High Court in 2018, while Kumar’s acquittal by the trial court in 2013 was overturned.

The case pertains to the killing of five Sikhs in Raj Nagar Part-I in Palam Colony, southwest Delhi, on November 1-2, 1984, and the burning down of a gurdwara in Raj Nagar Part-II.

The anti-Sikh riots erupted following the assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on October 31, 1984, by her two Sikh bodyguards.

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About the Author: Nunnem Gangte