1984 forgotten citizens remembered on wall

1,500-feet wall displays names of those killed in riots

A demonstration was held at Jantar Mantar on Saturday to mark the 29th anniversary of 1984 anti-Sikh riots and pay homage to Sikhs who were killed during the carnage.

A 1,500-feet wall with the names of those who were killed was also exhibited and 3,000 posters each with a photograph of a turban and the name of the person killed was displayed with a punch line that read “forgotten citizens 1984.”

Nearly 3,000 people participated in the peaceful protest and 200-300 people lay on Parliament Street trying to re-enact the scene which took place on this day 28 years ago. Candlelight vigil was organised in the evening.  

Senior High Court lawyer H S Phoolka who has been fighting to secure justice for Sikh families lamented that justice has been denied to the victims’ families.

“Just 12 convictions in murder cases across India have taken place in which a total of 30 people have been convicted and most of them are out currently as their appeals are being heard. Now compare that with the murder of 3,000 Sikhs in Delhi and 4,000 more across the country. Is this true justice?” he said.

He added that in the case of Gujarat riots, 10 death sentences and 30 life imprisonments have been given but justice has been denied to Sikh families in the Capital.
For Prakash Kaur, who lost 23 family members during the killings, it has not been easy to survive.

“My family was killed because the sarpanch betrayed us. He told the killing mob about the hiding places. Six children were killed in front of us. All male members of our family were gone in seconds. We want a better life and justice for those who were mercilessly killed,” she said.

A petition initiated by Justice Krishna Iyer was submitted to Prime Minister on Saturday.
The petition having over 40,000 signatures demands reopening of cases closed without trial by police, appointment of a special investigating agency and constitution of fast track courts.

It has been endorsed by senior advocates H S Phoolka and Fali Nariman, former law minister Shanti Bhushan, retired Justice Rajinder Sachar and veteran journalist Kuldip Nayar.

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