Former CBI chief gave clean chit to Tytler

Despite the probe team saying that there is prosecutable evidence against Congress leader Jagdish Tytler in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots case

Written by Rahul Tripathi | New Delhi | Published: April 11, 2013 12:49 am

Despite the probe team saying that there is prosecutable evidence against Congress leader Jagdish Tytler in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots case,it was former CBI director Ashwani Kumar,now the Governor of Nagaland,who gave him a clean chit.

On Wednesday,the CBI said they will study a Delhi court verdict directing it to reopen investigation against Tytler and then decide whether to challenge it in a higher court or not.

In April 2009,the CBI,in its closure report in the case,had said the statements of two witnesses,Jasbir Singh and Surender Singh,were inconsistent,unreliable and unworthy of credit. “The other witnesses had refuted the claims made by Jasbir and Surender. During further probe,sufficient evidence on the Tytler’s involvement did not come up on record,” the agency had claimed.

In December 2008,the CBI had also sent a team to the US to record the duo’s statement after they refused to depose before the court fearing for their life. The then CBI joint director,Arun Kumar,in his note had said there was a strong case against Tytler for murder,rioting and damage to property.

He said the cases had been “politically used and misused time and again”. Pointing to the flip-flop in witnesses’ statements,he said that “accused persons are so influential that nobody can depose truthfully in India”. He noted it will be inappropriate to deny the statements of Jasbir and Surender and that it is better left for the trial court to decide.

Sources said Ashwani Kumar decided to close Tytler’s case after Director of Prosecution,S K Sharma,opined that the case against Tytler was too weak. The CBI also cited a video-recording from Doordarshan that showed Tytler attending Indira Gandhi’s funeral when the riots took place. According to the CBI,it took up the probe into the Bara Hindu Rao riots case against Tytler in 2005 and filed its first chargesheet on September 29,2007. However,at that time an application was moved on behalf of one witness,Jasbir Singh,stating his willingness to depose against Tytler.

The CBI claimed that another witness,Surender Singh,also surfaced during the probe and filed two affidavits before Justice Nanavati Commission. In his first affidavit filed in January 2002,he had alleged that Tytler was leading the mob on November 1,1984. However,he retracted and filed the second affidavit in August 2002 where he pleaded his ignorance about the contents of his earlier affidavit.

He submitted another affidavit in April 2006 before the CBI and stated that the contents of his second affidavit were correct. He later shifted to the US where a team was sent in 2008 to examine him and another witness.

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