A Delhi court yesterday ordered the reopening of a case against Congress leader Jagdish Tytler related to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. Additional Sessions Judge Anuradha Shukla Bajaj also set aside the Central Bureau of Investigation’s (CBI) closure report which gave a clean chit to Tytler, claiming there was no evidence against him.The court’s order came on a plea filed by a riot victim, who sought a further probe in the killing of three people near Gurdwara Pul Bangash in central Delhi.
Tytler is accused of instigating a mob that led to the murder of three men who had taken shelter at the gurdwara on November 1, 1984. The mob attack was part of violence against Sikhs after the assassination of then prime minister Indira Gandhi on October 31, 1984.
The court directed the CBI to examine eye-witnesses and people who claimed they have information about the riots.The court, setting aside the magisterial court order that accepted the CBI’s closure report, said, “The order of the trial court accepting the closure report is set aside. The CBI is directed to conduct the investigation and examine the claimants/eye witnesses in the case.”
Opposing the victim’s plea against the CBI closure report, the agency had sought its dismissal, saying the probe has made it clear that Tytler was not present on November 1, 1984, at Gurdwara Pul Bangash where three people were killed during the riots.
However, senior advocate HS Phoolka, appearing for petitioner Lakhwinder Kaur had said that there was material which the CBI had ignored and evidence was also there before the trial court against Tytler. Three men — Badal Singh, Thakur Singh and Gurcharan Singh — were killed near Gurdwara Pul Bangash, allegedly on Tytler’s instigation.
His role in the killing of three men was re-investigated by the CBI after a court in December 2007 refused to accept its closure report. Tytler was at Teen Murti Bhavan, the residence of the then late prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru, where Indira Gandhi’s body was laid, at the time of Pul Bangash incident, the CBI claimed.
It added that the agency has already re-investigated the case on the order of trial court but there was no sufficient evidence against Tytler. Tytler was given clean chit by the CBI on April 2, 2009, which claimed that the agency had no evidence against him.