New Delhi (Agencies): The Delhi High Court (DHC) on Monday convicted Congress leader Sajjan Kumar in a case related to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots and sentenced him to life imprisonment.
The court said that former MP Sajjan Kumar had evaded justice for the crime due to ‘political patronage’.
Over 3,000 Sikhs were killed in riots following the assassination of then Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by her Sikh bodyguards.
The bodyguards had been angered by her decision to send the army into the Golden Temple, the holiest site in Sikhism, to confront militants.
Mobs attacked and murdered Sikhs across the country following Gandhi’s death. More than 2,700 Sikhs are believed to have died in Delhi during the riots.
Sajjan Kumar is the highest-profile politician to be convicted over the deaths.
Though a number of cases have been filed against Kumar, the verdict on Monday was in relation to the killing of a family of five in Delhi.
Kumar had previously been acquitted by a trial court, but the verdict was challenged by India’s top investigative agency, which alleged he had been involved in a conspiracy with the police.
Several eyewitnesses testified to Kumar inciting mobs in Delhi’s Sultanpur.
Indian Finance Minister Arun Jaitley welcomed the verdict.
“Sajjan Kumar’s conviction by the Delhi High Court is a delayed vindication of Justice,” he wrote in a tweet. “The Congress and the Gandhi family legacy will continue to pay for the sins of 1984 riots.”
In addition to Kumar, several other high-profile Congress politicians have been accused of involvement with the violence of the riots, including Kamal nath and Jagdish Tytler. However, both deny any involvement.