CHANDIGARH – The Punjab and Haryana High Court has made it clear that the authorities in the State of Punjab are required to decide the claims of the “1984 massacre of Sikhs victims” in a time-bound manner.
“It is imperative upon the authorities to consider their claim in a time-bound manner,” a Division Bench of the high court has asserted, while setting a four-month deadline for the Ludhiana and Mohali deputy commissioners to verify the claims of the “riot victims”.
The ruling came on three separate petitions filed by Mohinder Singh and other petitioners against the State of Punjab and other respondents. Taking up the petitions, the Division Bench of Justices Surya Kant and RP Nagrath asked the deputy commissioners to recommend their claims for the benefits under the government policy to the “competent authority”, if they were found to be genuine “riot victims”.
Going into the circumstances leading to the filing of the petitions, the Bench said the grievance of the petitioners was that their status as victims of the 1984 anti-Sikh riots was not being determined by the Deputy Commissioners of Ludhiana and Mohali, “keeping in view the decision of this court dated September 14, 2010, passed in the case of Kuljit Singh and others versus State of Punjab and another”.
The Bench observed that the order was upheld by the Division Bench on February 15, 2011 in the case of Greater Mohali Area Development Authority versus Kuljit Singh and others.