North-east Delhi violence: We should never allow another 1984, says HC

PTI New Delhi | Updated on February 26, 2020 Published on February 26, 2020

The court held a special hearing at midnight and directed the police to ensure safe passage for the injured to government hospitals

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked the Delhi Police to be alert to avoid the repeat of the 1984 anti-Sikh riots in the State. It also applauded the Police for its prompt action in evacuating the injured in north-east Delhi where communal violence had erupted over the amended citizenship law.

A bench of Justices S Muralidhar and Anup J Bhambhani termed as “extremely unfortunate” the killing of an IB officer in the ongoing violence in which 20 people have died, and over 180 injured.“While the order was being dictated mid-night, police was implementing it right there and rescuing injured persons,” the bench said during the day’s hearing.

The court also appointed advocate Zubeda Begum as amicus curiae to coordinate between the victims and various agencies. It further asked the director of Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IHBAS) to provide sufficient number of qualified professionals to cater to the victims suffering from post trauma stress.

The court cautioned the authorities to remain alert so that the carnage caused during the 1984 anti-Sikh riots is not repeated. “No, no we should never allow another 1984...especially under the watch of the court and under your (Delhi Police) watch... We have to be very, very alert,” the bench said.

The court has put up the matter for further hearing on February 28.

Special hearing

The court held a special hearing, which started at 12:30 AM at the residence of Justice Muralidhar, after receiving a call from an advocate explaining the dire circumstances wherein it was not possible to move the victims from a small hospital to the GTB Hospital.

It then directed the police to ensure safe passage for the injured to government hospitals and providing emergency treatment for them. It had directed the police to deploy all resources at command and on the strength of the order as well as to make sure the injured receive immediate emergency treatment, if not at the Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital then at the Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan Hospital (LNJP) or Maulana Azad or any other hospital.

The bench had also called for a status report of compliance, including information about the injured victims and the treatment offered to them. It said the order be communicated to the medical superintendents of the GTB and the LNJP Hospitals.

The urgent hearing was conducted after advocate Suroor Mander called the judge and sought urgent orders for safe passage of ambulances for the injured.

Delhi Police and the government were represented through additional standing counsel Sanjoy Ghose.

During the hearing, the bench spoke over phone to doctor Anwar of the Al-hind Hospital in New Mustafabad who told the court that there were two bodies and 22 injured persons there and he had been trying to seek police assistance since 4 PM on Tuesday without success.

The court then directed the senior officials to reach to the hospital forthwith, following which they started the process of evacuating the injured to the nearest hospitals. It also said this order be brought to the knowledge of the Delhi Police Commissioner.

Published on February 26, 2020

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