A Delhi Court on Monday issued summons to former Congress MP Sajjan Kumar and others after taking cognisance of the chargesheets filed against them in two cases relating to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.
Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Lokesh Kumar Sharma sought presence of the 62-year-old Congress leader and others before the court on February 17.
The magistrate said that after perusing the chargesheets including the statements of the witnesses, prima-facie case of murder, rioting and other offences were made out against the accused.
He, however, declined a plea of CBI and the victim’s counsel to issue non-bailable warrant (NBW) against the accused in view of the gravity of the offences involved.
“In the facts and circumstances, all the accused persons are very much residing in the same locality. There is no complaint of criminal intimidation of any of the witnesses.
“The primary concern of CBI is to ensure the presence of the accused. I do not find any reason to adopt coercive methods to ensure presence of the accused. So the prayer(for NBW) of CBI and the victims is declined,” the court said.
The CBI had on January 13 filed two chargesheets against the former Congress MP and others before the court in two separate cases of allegedly making provocative speeches, leading to the killing of 12 persons in 1984 riots that followed the assassination of Indira Gandhi.
The probe agency had filed the chargesheets in the court after concluding its investigation into the cases registered on the recommendation of Nanavati Commission in 2005.
The cases, in which the chargesheets were filed against Kumar and several others, were registered in police stations in Sultanpuri and Delhi Cantonment following the killing of seven and five persons respectively in the riots.
During the proceedings, senior advocate H. S. Phoolka, counsel for victim Nirpreet Kaur, contended that the court should issue NBW against the accused as there were grave charges against them.
He submitted that when there is an apprehension that accused may tamper with the evidence and influence the witnesses, the court has discretion to issue NBW against them.
Mr. Phoolka also referred two judgements of the High Court to buttress his arguments.
His contention was supported by CBI counsel who submitted that the NBW should be issued against the accused as there was gravity of offence involved in the matter.
The CBI’s plea was, however, countered by the court which asked it why it failed to arrest any of the accused during the investigation of the cases.
“Why did you not arrest any of the accused if there was gravity of offences? Your anxiety is only to secure presence of accused,” the court said.
The court issued summons against all accused except Mahender Yadav and Brahmanand Gupta as their counsel was present to take notice on their behalf.