Welcoming the High Court verdict against Sajjan Kumar, the family of a riot victim in a Jalandhar village said that while the Congress leader deserved capital punishment for his crimes, they were still happy with the court ruling. They also urged the Union government to provide the announced ex-gratia and migration grant to them.
“He must be hanged till death as he was the man who led the mob and killed innocents and also forced many to flee Delhi,” said Santokh Singh (72), elder brother of Hardev Singh (then 24), who was killed by Yashpal Singh and Naresh Sherawat — both convicted and sentenced to capital punishment and life imprisonment, respectively on November 20 this year.
“Still his (Sajjan Kumar’s) conviction will heal our wounds to some extent as going to jail at this age would be more troublesome for him. But he deserves all this and more,” said Santokh Singh, who fought his brother’s case along with his three brothers for 34 years.
“This incident ruined our lives completely. Our parents left for heaven waiting for justice. We had to shift to our native village, Daroli Kalan, near Adampur in Jalandhar from Delhi after. We were forced to leave our well established grocery stores there,” added Santokh Singh, a former cop who has been living with his three brothers at Daroli Kalan village of Adampur in Jalandhar since 1986.
“In my brother’s case, two accused were sentenced last month and it was confirmed beyond doubt that we are riot victims, but till date government has not paid a single penny as compensation to us,” he said, adding that neither their Red Card, which is given to riot victims, was made nor were they given any compensation for their grocery stores in Delhi, which were looted by the rioters in 1984.
“Government neither gave us the announced ex-gratia grant of Rs two lakhs, nor doled out the migration compensation of Rs two lakh as we had to migrate from Delhi to Punjab after leaving behind our well established business there,” he said.
Hardev Singh was killed by both the convicts in Mahipalpur area of Delhi on November 1, 1984 just a day after the family got shifted from Mahipalpur to Sadar Bazaar Cantonment area in Delhi. The rest of the family was forced to hide for days during the riots to save their lives.