Staff Reporter

Petition against conferment of the President's Medal on Amod Kanth and S.S. Manan

NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court on Tuesday summoned from the Union Home Ministry the original file that was sent to the President recommending conferment of the President's Medal on Delhi Jal Board's Chief Vigilance Officer Amod Kanth and Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP), South, S.S. Manan, to verify a contention by a petitioner that the President had decorated the two officers with the Medal on the basis of wrong facts and false statements provided to the Ministry by them in 1985.

Justice B.D. Ahmed of the Court directed the Ministry to submit the file to him by April 23, the next date of hearing.

Urging the Court to strip the two officers of the Medal, the petitioner Amrik Singh submitted that he and his family members should be compensated for their sufferings at the hands of the officers who had branded them as terrorists and foisted upon them a false case of murder, attempt-to-murder, criminal conspiracy and rioting during the riots following the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on 31 October, 1984.

The petition also sought prosecution of the two officers for harassing and implicating Amrik Singh and his family members in a false criminal case and playing fraud on the Government for obtaining the Medal.

Mr. Kanth was at that time DCP, Central Delhi, and Mr. Manan the Station House Officer (SHO) of the Paharganj police station.

The petitioner submitted that the police had registered the case against him and his family members staying at that time at Paharganj in Central Delhi accusing them of firing at the police, military and public when the two police officers were busy dealing with the rioting in the area.

While granting bail to the victims of the false case, a Sessions court here had observed that "the accused were prima facie justified in resorting to firing in self-defence'', the petition stated.

Yet the Ministry recommended the names of the two officers for the Award, and they were decorated with it for killing and arresting murderers, miscreants and shooters on June 7, 1985, the petition submitted.

Despite a forensic report contrary to the police version of the case, the police continued to pursue the case, the petitioner stated.

The prosecution later closed the case, the petitioner stated.

The two officers got the Medal by giving wrong information and false statements and for killing innocent persons, the petitioner submitted.