The Central Bureau of Investigation informing the Delhi High Court that the local police’s investigation into the role of former Congress MP Sajjan Kumar in the 1984 massacre after the assassination of Indira Gandhi was tainted is anything but news. No one who witnessed the shameless functioning of the cops then would be surprised at the premier investigation agency describing the police probe as it has. It was common knowledge at the time that the police were following instructions to let the killers run riot ~ and to suppress everything that might subsequently constitute evidence of a pogrom.
As the High Court has just been informed by Special Public Prosecutor RS Cheema, the FIRs were kept “in hibernation”. And senior Advocate HS Phoolka (the victims’ counsel in a murder case), further told the bench of Justices S Murlidhar and Vinod Goel that the ex- MP has been “in a position of power” and enjoyed immunity to “thwart the investigation”. That “thwarting” has scuttled inquiry commissions and committees: the moot question remains why the CBI has failed to secure evidence from a number of upright police officers who declined to toe the line.
A few have even been honoured by Sikh bodies for the protection they had extended to the traumatised community. Some of the shame must devolve on the CBI too, the victims are still waiting for justice ~ only a few stalwarts like Mr Phoolka remain committed to struggling for the thousands who were slaughtered in a never-to-be-forgotten massacre that raged like wildfire across the Capital. Indira Gandhi is dubbed the architect of the Emergency, Rajiv Gandhi’s role in 1984 is no less despicable. Only in a very technical sense is there a modicum of validity to Rahul’s advocates who claim he was too young at the time to remember: surely he must know it was over Indira’s body that Rajiv swept the polls.
An aspirant to the PMO must familiarise himself with history, however uncomfortable that might be. It might help him understand why the Congress has lost its original aura. Not that all the goodwill has automatically been transferred to the BJP. The “management” of the situation in Delhi (other parts of the country too) actually served as a blueprint for the Gujarat killings in 2002.
A top former Army officer has recently spoken of how long the troops were made to wait at Ahmedabad airport for the state government to provide them transport: in Delhi in 1984 it was common to see police jeeps leading military convoys along main roads ~ away from congested urban areas where the bloodletting was taking place.
Whether the then chief minister of Gujarat (now the Prime Minister) will admit it or not, it was the Congress that had drafted the battle plans. The greater national tragedy being that neither attempt at“ethnic cleansing” had immediate, negative electoral impact. On the contrary…