AMN / New Delhi
The Supreme Court has appointed a supervisory panel comprising two of its former judges – Justice J.M.Panchal and Justice K.S.Radhakrishnan – to examine the justification for closure of 241 anti-Sikh riot cases probed by the Special Investigation Team (SIT).
A bench of Justice Dipak Misra, Justice Amitava Roy and Justice A.M. Khanwilkar gave three months time to the Supervisory Committee to examine the 1984 riot cases that were closed and submit its report.
“We constitute a Supervisor Body of two former Judges of this Court, namely, Mr. Justice J.M. Panchal and Mr. Justice K.S.P. Radhakrishnan, who shall scrutinize the 199 matters which have been closed and express the view whether there was justification to close the cases”, the said the bench in its order.
The two judge panel would also examine another 42 cases which were closed by the SIT afdter investigation.
Asking the supervisory committee to submit its report within three months, the court directed next hearing of the matter on December 6, 2017.
The apex court order came after the Centre had left it to the court to take a final call on the matter. The court was given the details of closure report in 199 cases in a sealed cover.
The bench ordered that same be handed over to the supervisory committee.
The centre would extend all the secretarial facilities to the supervisory committee, the bench ordered.
The court was told that of the 250 cases that were investigated by the SIT, the closure report was filed in 241cases.
The court was informed that nine cases were pending with the SIT.
Two cases are being investigated by the Central Bureau of Investigation.
The court order on the appointment of supervisory committee comprising two former judges of the top court came on a 2016 petition by one S. Gurlad Singh Kahlon – a member of Delhi Sikh Gurudwara Management Committee.
Kahlon had contended that SIT set-up in February 2015 to investigating the cases that were earlier closed for the lack of sufficient evidence has utterly failed in carrying out the probe.
He had contended that the SIT that was set up on February 12, 2015 and was given six months time to complete its mandate. However, on August 12, 2015, it was given an extension of one year.
The top court had on January 16 this year had sought a comprehensive status report on the probe into the 1984 anti-Sikh riot cases being investigated by the SIT set up in 2015.