US court summons cong, Kamal Nath for '84 riots

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Old 03-Mar-2011
US court summons cong, Kamal Nath for '84 riots

Chandigarh March 3:

A US district court has summoned the Congress (I), earlier avatar of Congress, for ''conspiring, aiding, abetting and carrying out organized attacks on the Sikh population of India in November 1984''. On March 1, the US District Court for the Southern District of New York, summoned Congress (I) following a law suit filed by Sikhs For Justice (SFJ).

This is a US-based human rights group pursuing the 1984 anti-Sikh riots cases in India and US under Alien Tort Claims Act (ATCA) and Torture Victim Protection Act (TVPA). The SFJ, along with families of some of the Sikh victims, is pursuing the case in the US court. The families had shifted to USA after the riots. Union minister Kamal Nath is also one of the respondents in the case.

''Within 21 days of the service of this summon on you... you must serve on the plaintiff an answer to the unattached complaint or a motion under rule 12 of the Federal Rules of Civil procedure,'' read the summons sent to Congress-I and Kamal Nath at the US office of Indian National Overseas Congress at Union Street, Flushing, New York.

In a statement, Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, SFJ's legal advisor, said, ''The gravity, scale and specially the organized nature of these attacks was concealed by the Indian government portraying them as November 1984 anti-Sikh riots of Delhi. These attacks were neither riots nor were they confined to Delhi alone. In fact, during November 1984, Sikhs were attacked in 18 states and more than 100 cities of India in an identical manner and the attackers were led by Congress (I) leaders.''

Jatinder Singh Grewal, SFJ youth coordinator, said Congress (I) ''committed genocide against Sikhs as defined in Article 2 of UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, 1948''.

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