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Friday, 9 April 2010

US Court issues summons to Kamal Nath for his role in the 1984 Sikh genocide

Sikhs for Justice (SFJ), a U.S. based non-profit national human rights advocacy group, has filed a civil lawsuit against India’s Union Minister for Road and Transport, Kamal Nath, for his participation in the 1984 genocide of the Sikhs in Delhi. SFJ filed the suit along with two individuals who were directly affected by the November 1984 Sikh genocide. The lawsuit has been docketed (10 CV 2940) in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, and has been assigned to Honorable Judge Sweet. The District Court has issued summons, and the Minister has to now respond to the summons before April 28.

The lawsuit against Kamal Nath has been filed under both the Alien Tort Claims Act (ATCA) and The Torture Victim Protection Act (TVPA) because of the alleged failure of the Indian government to enforce human rights protection and hold violators accountable.

SFJ’s attorney, G.S. Pannun, said “U.S. law provides a remedy to victims of human rights violations that have been committed abroad and allows the victims to bring a lawsuit against the perpetrator in the U.S. Federal District Court”. Pannun added “Despite several witnesses who saw Kamal Nath inciting and leading the mob, Nath has been successfully escaping justice under the Indian system for more than 25 years using his influence and position in the ruling Congress party”.

SFJ has a strong legal team that is advising the non-profit organization. G.S. Pannun is their counsel in the United States and is being supported by several Indian Supreme Court and High Court lawyers. Senior Advocate and Sikh rights activist Harvinder Phoolka is also advising SFJ on the legal issues. Other Congress leaders who are still facing the heat of Sikh riots cases are Sajjan Kumar and Jagdish Tytler. 

SFJ is holding a Justice Rally against Kamal Nath’s U.S. visit today in front of the McGraw Hill Building in New York where Kamal Nath will be attending a gathering of the U.S.- India Business Council.

SFJ maintains that the genocide of India’s Sikh population was State orchestrated because two Sikh bodyguards had killed Indira Gandhi.

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