Amidst high security on Monday, former Congress leader Sajjan Kumar surrendered before Karkardooma Court to serve the life sentence awarded to him by the Delhi High Court in connection with a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case.
The case pertains to the killing of five Sikhs in southwest Delhi’s Raj Nagar on November 1-2, 1984, and the burning down of a gurdwara in Raj Nagar Part-II.
He surrendered at 2.15 pm in the court of Metropolitan Magistrate Aditi Garg, who directed that he be lodged at Mandoli Jail, “as per rules”.
Outside the court, a group of people from the Sikh community raised slogans: “Desh ka kanoon, zindabad. (Long live India’s justice system).”
MM Aditi Garg rejected Kumar’s petition to be lodged in the high-security Tihar Jail, but allowed his plea to let him be taken to the prison in a separate vehicle. “It is stated by the counsel for the convict that he was acquitted by the trial court order, vide 30.4.2013. The said order was reversed by the Delhi HC, vide order dated 17.12.2018… In view of the above, the convict is taken into custody and is sent to jail as per rules. Since there is security threat to the convict, he be provided separate van for commuting from jail to court and court to jail,” the court said.
The HC had set a deadline of December 31 for Kumar to surrender. On December 21, the court declined his plea to extend the time by a month. The 73-year former Congress leader has filed a petition in the Supreme Court challenging the conviction and life sentence awarded by the High Court.
On December 17, the High Court had convicted and sentenced Kumar to life imprisonment for the “remainder of his natural life”. After his conviction, Kumar resigned from the Congress.