1984 riots case: Notice to CBI on bail pleas of 2 lifers

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New Delhi, Nov 24: The Delhi High Court on Monday sought response of CBI on the interim bail pleas of two of the three convicts serving life term in a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case in which five members of a family were killed.

A bench of justices Pradeep Nandrajog and Mukta Gupta issued notice to the agency for November 26 and asked it to file status report on the issues raised by the two petitioners -- former MCD councillor Balwan Khokar and retired naval officer Bhagmal, convicted in the case.

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It also directed the Tihar Jail Superintendent to file the latest medical status report of the two convicts. The court issued notice to CBI while hearing the bail pleas of the convicts who have also challenged their conviction and life sentence awarded by the trial court in May last year.

86-year-old Bhagmal has sought three months interim bail, saying he is "suspecting enlarged prostate cancer", so he has to undergo surgery. Khokar also sought relief on another medical ground, saying his nose got broken after a fall in the jail premises.

Khokar, Bhagmal and Girdhari Lal were the three persons who were awarded life imprisonment by the trial court in May. While they sentenced to life imprisonment, two other convicts -former MLA Mahender Yadav and Kishan Khokar- were given three years jail term each.

On April 30, last year, the trial court had, however, acquitted Congress leader Sajjan Kumar in the case. His acquittal has also been challenged by the family members of the victims in the same court. The case relates to the murder of five members of a family in Raj Nagar area of Delhi Cantonment on November 1, 1984.

The convicts have filed their appeals before the High Court while CBI also filed its appeal demanding death sentence for the trio, saying they were engaged in "a planned communal riot" and "religious cleansing".

PTI

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