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'Sajjan Kumar at unease in jail, not eating properly'

By PTI
|

New Delhi, Jan 1: Former Congress leader Sajjan Kumar, who surrendered before a city court on Monday and was moved to the Mandoli jail in the national capital, had not been eating properly and seemed to be at "unease", sources said on Tuesday.

Sajjan Kumar

Kumar surrendered before a city court on Monday, the last day of the deadline set by the Delhi High Court, and was sent to jail to serve his life sentence in a case relating to the anti-Sikh riots of 1984. Sources on Tuesday claimed that Kumar, who was housed in ward number 1 of jail number 14 of the prison complex, was not talking much and had mostly remained silent since his arrival to the jail.

"He slept on the floor last night and did not have a good night's sleep. Even in the morning, he did not eat much and has been keeping to himself," a source said.

Kumar did not have any visitors Tuesday and seemed depressed, the sources said, adding that he was suffering from several ailments and was on medicines. They said the 73-year-old former Congress leader was undergoing regular medical check-ups. Kumar is the first big politician to be convicted in cases related to the anti-Sikh riots.

[Sajjan Kumar surrenders, sent to Mandoli jail for security reasons]

In its judgment on December 17, 2018, the high court had noted that over 2,700 Sikhs were killed in the national capital in the aftermath of then prime minister Indira Gandhi's assassination by her two Sikh bodyguards on October 31, 1984, holding that the riots were indeed a "carnage of unbelievable proportions".

After Kumar was brought to the prison complex on Monday, jail sources had said Sikh inmates would be kept away from him as a precautionary measure. On Tuesday, Kumar's medical examination was carried out by a jail doctor. He underwent a detailed medical examination owing to his age on Monday and had told the doctor that he was asthmatic and was suffering from body pain. Kumar has brought several medicines to the jail with him.

Security was strengthened in jail number 14 and the personnel were asked to ensure that the two-three Sikh inmates of the prison were kept away from Kumar, sources had said yesterday.

On his first day in jail on Monday, Kumar went without food. The high court had convicted Kumar and sentenced him to life imprisonment for the "remainder of his natural life". It had also set a December 31 deadline for him to surrender. On December 21, the court had refused to extend the deadline by a month, as pleaded by the former Congress leader. After his conviction, Kumar had resigned from the Congress party.

The case in which Kumar was convicted relates to the killing of five Sikhs in the Raj Nagar Part-I area of the Delhi Cantonment in the southwest parts of the national capital on November 1-2, 1984 and the burning down of a gurdwara in Raj Nagar Part-II.

PTI

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