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Ex-Congress leader found guilty in anti-Sikh riots requests time to surrender

December 21, 2018

Sajjan Kumar, the former Congress party leader found guilty convicted in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, has moved an application before the Delhi High Court seeking time until 31 January to surrender. The court will hear the application on Friday.

The riot victims have opposed the application. Kumar was found guilty and sentenced to jail for the rest of his life. The court cancelled an earlier order acquitting him of charges.

73-year-old Kumar has been convicted in the killing of five members of a family ad for setting a gurdwara on fire on 1 November, 1984.

At least 3,000 people were killed when mobs led by Congress leaders attacked Sikhs after the assassination of then prime minister Indira Gandhi Mrs Gandhi was killed outside her home by her Sikh bodyguards on 31 October.

What happened in the aftermath of the assassination of the then Prime Minister was carnage of unbelievable proportions in which over 2,700 Sikhs were murdered in Delhi alone. The law and order machinery clearly broke down and it was literally a 'free for all' situation which persisted. The aftershocks of those atrocities are still being felt," It is important to assure the victims that despite the challenges truth will prevail. - Delhi High Court

The judges remembered incidents when thousands of Sikhs were killed, and their homes burnt across Delhi and in parts of India.

"A majority of the perpetrators of these horrific mass crimes, enjoyed political patronage and were aided by an indifferent law enforcement agency ... The criminals escaped prosecution and punishment for over two decades", said the court in its order.

Kumar resigned from the primary membership of the Congress party a day after he was convicted and sentenced.

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