A SPECIAL Investigation Team (SIT) formed three years ago to investigate cases related to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots in Kanpur that broke out in the wake of the assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, has filed chargesheet against 40 persons in 10 cases involving the death of over 60 persons.
In 2019, the BJP government in the state constituted an SIT to examine all the 1,251 cases linked to the riots in Kanpur in which 127 people died. The SIT shortlisted 40 of these 1,251 cases that were of serious nature. Of the 40, Kanpur police had filed chargesheets in 11 cases and submitted closure reports in the remaining 29. The SIT had sent a recommendation to the state government to file appeals against acquittal in four cases. The state government is yet to take action and the SIT has been regularly sending reminders in this regard.
In the remaining 29 cases, the SIT selected 20 cases for further investigation. The agency found evidence in 11 cases and began taking action against the accused. In the remaining nine cases, the SIT did not find evidence and thus filed closure reports in court.
The SIT made the first arrest in June this year. Four persons were arrested for their alleged involvement in the murder of Bhupendra Singh, Satyaveer Singh Kala and Rakshpal Singh at Nirala Nagar on November 1, 1984. Since then, other accused were arrested at different points of time.
“We have made 41 arrests in 10 cases. The investigation is still pending against one person identified as Rajbir Singh, who was arrested from Meerut,” said Deputy Inspector General Balendu Bhushan, who is part of the SIT.
The chargesheet was filed against 40 accused on several IPC sections, including 302 (murder), 396 (dacoity with murder) and 436 (mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to destroy house, etc). The police arrested the accused on the basis of evidence including statements of eyewitnesses, victims and their families, said Bhushan. All the arrested persons are aged more than 60 years.
No arrests have been made yet in the 11th case by the SIT. Sources said the SIT identified three persons allegedly involved in this case which relates to murder with dacoity. A search is on for them, police sources said.
The SIT is now looking for eight persons involved in a triple murder case that took place in Kidwai area of the city. The SIT has got information on the whereabouts of seven of these persons and a probe is on, police sources said.
In August, an accused, Dhirendra Kumar Tiwari, who was arrested in connection with the triple murder case, died at a government hospital in Kanpur where he was sent from jail after he complained of chest pain. Tiwari has been lodged at Kanpur district jail since his arrest on July 12.
Initially, the state government fixed six months’ tenure of the SIT to complete the probe. As per requests made by the SIT, the government has been regularly giving them extensions. The previous extension of two months given by the government will end on November 30.
According to sources, a one-month extension has been sought by the SIT to complete its probe.