Kashmiri Pandits: Supreme Court has dismissed a petition filed by Roots in Kashmir, an NGO, seeking probe into the killing of Kashmiri Pandits
The killing of the Kashmiri Pandits in the Valley in 1989-90 during the height of militancy has been a hotly debated subject of many debates. A recent plea for a probe filed by NGO Roots was declined.
“We have gone through the curative petition and the connected documents. In our opinion, no case is made out within the parameters indicated in the decision of this court Rupa Ashok Hurra v Ashok Hurra,” said the top court in its order.
A bench of Chief Justice DY Chandrachud, and Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and S Abdul Nazeer declined the plea saying, “The Curative Petition is dismissed.” The curative petition was filed against a 2017 order of the top court which had dismissed the NGO’s petition for probe citing a long delay.
A curative petition is the last judicial resort available for redressal of grievances. On July 24, 2017, the Supreme Court dismissed the plea filed by the NGO saying it is difficult to have any probe and collect evidence on the issue more than 27 years after the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits. On October 25, 2017, the top court dismissed the review petition.
The curative petition sought direction to decide the case afresh on merit by way of providing a hearing opportunity to the parties. It mentioned the example of the 1984 Anti-Sikh riots case where the court had taken cognizance even after a lapse of more than 33 years.
The Delhi High Court re-opened five cases related to Anti–Sikh riots a judgment of the year 1986. The curative petition further mentioned that apex court allowed the appeal of CBI and transferred the criminal case from a Court in Raibareli to the Special Court in Lucknow with regard to the matter pertaining to the demolition of Babri Masjid and also allowed the framing of charges of criminal conspiracy relating to the year 1992.
“Judgment and order are liable to be reviewed on the ground that the order as it appears is based on an absolutely unsubstantiated presumption that no evidence is likely to be available after the passage of time ignoring the fact that trials are also proceeding in the some of the FIRs since the year 1996,” the curative petition stated.
The curative petition also said that the apex court “completely failed to appreciate that more than 700 Kashmiri Pandits were murdered during 1989 to 1998 and FIRs were lodged in more than 200 cases, but not even a single FIR has reached to the stage of filing of Charge sheet or conviction.”