“Hamari maa maar di, Sardaro ko maar do”, said Cham Kaur, the key eye witness in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots when she appeared before the court on Friday. She accused the Congress leader Sajjan Kumar for instigating the mob to ‘kill Sikhs’.
Kaur said that she saw Kumar addressing a rally in Delhi’s Sultanpuri area in 1984 where he was instigating the mob to kill people belonging to Sikh community, since the news of Indira Gandhi’s assassination had spread.
In her statement to District Judge Poonam A Bamba, Kaur said, “On October 31, 1984, we were watching TV news on the demise of Indira Gandhi. On November 1, 1984, when I stepped out to look for my goat, I saw accused Sajjan Kumar addressing the crowd and saying ‘hamari ma maar di. Sardaro ko maar do’ (Our mother was killed. Kill the Sikhs). I quickly returned home and told the same to the neighbourhood. Then we climbed to the second floor and hid our family and children at night. The whole night we remained there.”
She further added, “On 02.11.1984…My son Kapoor Singh and my father Sardarji Singh were pulled out of the hiding place on second floor, beaten badly and thrown down from the roof… Even I was assaulted and suffered injury on the right side of my forehead… I still have the scar.”
While identifying accused Sajjan Kumar, who was also produced before the court she said, “I could recognize the accused Sajjan Kumar, as we used to visit him for help in making ration card and passport. We used to visit the accused for getting papers stamps as he was the MP/MLA.”
The Congress seems to be confused as far as their stance on Sajjan Kumar is concerned. There appears clear division of view-points within the Congress party. On one hand, Punjab Chief Minister Capt. Amrainder Singh on number of occasions has referred to Kumar as the key accused in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. Here is what he has to say-
On the other hand, former Chief Minister of Delhi Sheila Dixit said, “Though he hasn’t been given ticket now for two-times, but he is a good Congress leader.”
Top leadership of the Congress party has tried to distance itself from Sajjan Kumar and Jagdish Tytler, who also has been accused in the case. In April this year, both were asked to leave Raj Ghat in New Delhi where Congress staged a protest against the government.
The country awaits sincere apologies from the Congress party for the gruesome killing of the Sikhs but the Congress President Rahul Gandhi doesn’t seem to assert the idea as he on numerous occasions has denied the involvement of Congress in the anti-Sikh riots.
The Congress which talks about communal harmony these days should first introspect. A question mark on the intentions of the Grand Old Party keeps looming as their own shirts are stained with ‘communal riots’.