With the Congress coming under attack for inviting Jagdish Tytler to Wednesday’s event, Sheila Dikshit dug her heels in, saying that she was “privileged” he was in attendance. “He is a Congressman and we feel privileged to have him here,” she said.
The opposition, meanwhile, was quick to lash out at the Congress for inviting the 1984 anti-Sikh riots accused to the event.
Delhi BJP spokesperson Tajinder Pal Singh Bagga tweeted: “Congress again rubbed salt into wounds of Sikhs by Inviting Sikh murderer Jagdish Tytler into event of Sheila Dixit (sic).”
The Aam Aadmi Party said the incident exposed Congress’s anti-Sikh face, and demanded that party leaders clear their stand on Tytler.
“Prominent presence of one of the main perpetrators of 1984 anti-Sikh riots in a public function exposes the real face of the party. Tytler is one of those who planned and carried out the worst mass murders in Delhi’s history. It is a shame that such riots masterminds are today the faces of Congress in Delhi,” said Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh.
Tytler, however, asked those criticising him to show if there is any FIR against him. “Those who are relating my name with the incident, I want to ask them that do they have any FIR against me? There is no point of having this discussion. I am here to support the party,” he said.
Asked if he will contest from any constituency, he said the decision is not up to him. “Let the party decide,” he said.
Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee general secretary and BJP-SAD MLA Manjinder Singh Sirsa said that Tytler sitting in the front row at the event was meant to intimidate witnesses in anti-Sikh riot cases.
“The message is clear. The Congress reflects its support to Tytler and gives a signal to witnesses of 1984 anti-Sikh riots,” said Sirsa.
A similar controversy arose in April last year over the presence of Tytler and former Congress leader Sajjan Kumar, now convicted in a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case, during a protest by Congress president Rahul Gandhi against the central government at Rajghat.