1984 riots was 'state-sponsored terror' by Congress against innocent Sikhs: BJP

New Delhi [India], Mar. 29 (ANI): Hailing the Delhi High Court's order to re-open five cases pertaining to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Wednesday dubbed the tragic incident it as a 'state-sponsored terror' unleashed by the Congress party and their goons on the innocent Sikhs of Delhi.

BJP spokesperson GVL Narsimha Rao said re-opening of cases shows the lack of apathy and concern that the Congress had for the riots victims ensuring that the justice is not meted out to them.

"The Delhi High Court found serious lapses in the manner in which neither the complainants nor the eye-witnesses were properly examined in these cases. Several Congress leaders in Delhi are accused in these five cases. It clearly shows the kind of apathy, lack of concern for the victims of the 1984 riots and successive regimes of the Congress at the national level have ensured that justice is not meted out to the victims of the 19814 riots," he told ANI.

Quoting the recent Supreme Court's observation to re-open 199 files pertaining to the same, Rao said it holds out a ray of hope for the victims.

"1984 riots were a state-sponsored terror unleashed by the Congress party and their goons on the innocent Sikhs of Delhi. So, certainly justice must be meted out to them. The Delhi High Court's intervention will certainly ensure justice to victims in these cases," he said.

Meanwhile, the Congress remained adamant on its stand, stating that it is nothing but an attempt to score brownie points.

"I think there is no great achievement in repeatedly, for political antagonism and vendetta reasons, on a collective basis declare that we have re-opened the 1984 cases...This is probably the fifth or sixth time and there have been innumerable commissions, innumerable courts. Collectively, I think it is doing nothing but scoring brownie political points," Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi told ANI.

The Delhi High Court today reopened five cases in connection with the 1984 anti-Sikh riots that were closed in 1986.

CBI had filed appeals against the acquittal of Congress leader Sajjan Kumar and light sentence to ex-councillor Balwan Khokar.

High Court has taken suo Motu cognizance as during course of the arguments Sajjan Kumar's lawyers mentioned these matters as precedents since co accused Mahender yadav and Balwan Khokar and Kishan Khokar had been acquitted in them.

The court noted that eyewitnesses had not been examined in those cases and there was a "travesty" since investigation was not done properly.

Court took suo Motu cognizance of the "errors" in the 1986 trial judgment, adding that key eyewitnesses were not examined and cases were closed "very rapidly" seemingly without proper investigation and trial. The bench passed this order after taking note of the trial court judgments passed in 1986 in the five cases.

Earlier, the apex court directed the Centre to deposit more than 190 files in connection with this case.

Expressing serious concern over the closure of more than 190 cases, out of a total of the 293 cases referred to SIT on 1984 anti-Sikh riot cases, the court asked the Union of India to produce on record on April 25 all the files related to closure of these cases by SIT.

Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi told the apex court that the SIT in as many as 263 cases had no case files and there was no trace of any victim or witness.

On February 20, the Centre filed a status report in the top court on the investigation conducted by the SIT into anti-Sikh riots cases.

The court had asked the government to brief it within four weeks on the steps taken in the matter, after the Centre had said that the SIT's work was "in progress".

Earlier, the apex court directed petitioner Gurlad Singh Kahlon to file his suggestions in connection with the riot cases.

Kahlon had sought the court's direction for setting up of the SIT to ensure speedy justice to the riot victims.

Anti-Sikh riots that broke out after the assassination of then prime minister Indira Gandhi had claimed 2,433 lives in Delhi alone. (ANI)