A day after Lt-Governor Najeeb Jung announced that most decisions taken by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government will be carried forward, former Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday asked him to officially notify the setting up of the Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. Sources, however, said the final decision on the matter will have to be taken by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).
The L-G’s office will have to forward the proposal to the MHA, sources said. AAP leaders, on the other hand, said the meeting held by the L-G with officials of various departments on Tuesday did not take any decision on the SIT probe ordered by the AAP government.
“The list of decisions which the L-G decided to take forward did not include the SIT probe on the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. As a result, Kejriwal wrote to the L-G on the issue. He thanked the L-G for supporting his government’s decisions and suggested that police officers from outside Delhi be appointed in the SIT for an impartial inquiry,” Deepak Bajpai, AAP’s official spokesperson, said.
Earlier this month, the AAP government had set up an SIT for probing the riots.
Stressing on the urgency for an SIT probe, Kejriwal, in his letter to the L-G, said, “Some of the witnesses are already old and the SIT is perhaps their last hope of getting justice in this country. Therefore, I request you to kindly expedite the setting up of this team.”
Kejriwal even suggested the names of three senior IPS officers from outside Delhi, who could head the SIT, which has been asked to submit its report within a year.
“Many of the eyewitnesses have already been waiting for 30 years to provide their version of how they lost their near and dear ones in the riots, in which around 3,000 innocent people lost their lives,” an official statement of the party said.
The party also came down heavily on the Congress and the BJP for their stand on the matter. While it slammed the Congress for trying “every possible trick to save those who perpetrated and masterminded the riots”, the party’s statement said the BJP had not taken any “concrete” steps to “ensure justice for the riot victims” despite being in power at the state and Centre.