New Delhi: The Supreme Court took on record the final report submitted by a supervisory body appointed by it to look into the closure of 241 cases in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots and said it will examine it.
The bench said it will examine on December 11 the report filed by the advisory body, comprising former apex court judges Justices J M Panchal and Justice K S P Radhakrishnan.
As the report was submitted in a leather bag with a number-lock system, a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said the lock will be opened on 11 December. It asked the parties including Additional Solicitor General Pinki Anand to be present to assist the court in the matter.
The court said a member of the panel had written a letter to the court on 4 September, after the scrutiny of every matter on the issue whether Special Investigation Team (SIT) investigating the Sikh riot cases was justified in closing the 241 cases.
On 16 August, the apex court had appointed the supervisory panel to examine the SIT’s decision to close 241 cases in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots matter and asked it to submit report in three months.
The Centre had earlier told that out of the 250 cases which were investigated by the SIT, closure reports were filed in 241. It had said that nine cases were still being investigated by the SIT, while two cases are being probed by the Central Bureau of Investigation.
The apex court had on 24 March asked the Centre to place before it the files pertaining to the 199 cases of the anti- Sikh riots which the special investigation team (SIT) set up by the Home Ministry had decided to “close”.
The SIT is headed by Pramod Asthana, an IPS officer of 1986 batch, and has Rakesh Kapoor, a retired district and sessions judge, and Kumar Gyanesh, an additional deputy commissioner of Delhi Police, as its members. The anti-Sikh riots, which had broke out after the assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, had claimed 2,733 lives in Delhi alone. The government had earlier filed a status report on the probe conducted by the SIT in the cases.
Petitioner S Gurlad Singh Kahlon had earlier told the bench that a total of 293 riots related cases were taken up for scrutiny by the three-member SIT and it had decided to close 199 of them after scrutiny.
Kahlon, a member of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee, had sought the court’s direction for setting up an SIT to ensure speedy justice to riots victims.