A day after the Centre agreed to a two-member SIT probe in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, the Supreme Court Tuesday too said it had no-objection with the team. Ordering the two-member SIT to continue its investigation, the apex court modified its January 11 order that constituted a three-member team.
The court had approved the names of former Delhi High Court judge Justice S N Dhingra, serving Himachal Pradesh cadre IPS officer Abhishek Dular and retired IG-rank officer Rajdeep Singh as committee members. Singh, however, declined to be a part of the team citing personal reasons.
Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Pinky Anand, appearing for the Centre, said she has no objection to the suggestions given by the counsel for the petitioner that the other two members should continue with the work. Senior advocates R S Suri and H S Phoolka, representing the petitioner, said appointing a third member in the SIT might delay the process and the other two members should continue with their work.
But the court noted that since the original order setting up the SIT was by a three-judge bench, it could not be changed by a two-judge bench. A three-judge bench was set up today, which asked Dhingra and Dular to continue with the probe into 186 cases of the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.
How investigators pieced together Chapter 1984
Large-scale riots had broken out in the national capital in the aftermath of the assassination of the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by her two Sikh security guards on the morning of October 31, 1984. The violence had claimed 2,733 lives in Delhi alone.
The court had earlier said the previous SIT did not carry out further probe into the 186 cases in which closure reports were filed, and had directed setting up of a fresh SIT comprising a former high court judge and two police officers.
(With inputs from PTI)