BEFORE JUSTICE NANAVATI COMMISSION OF INQUIRY
( Witness No : 11 )
Name : Ms.Madhu Kishwar, D/o Shri K.L. Kishwar
I have filed an affidavit dated 20.8.2000 before this Commission. The original is shown to me, it is the same (the affidavit is taken on record and marked as exhibit No. W11/1). My affidavit may be treated as my examination-in-chief. I further say that, in November, 1984 I was staying in Lajpat Nagar. On 1st November, 1984 I had gone to my office at about 9.00 AM. While I was sitting there I came to know that the Gurudwara in our locality was set on fire. I therefore rushed to that place with my two colleagues. The gurudwara is about 4 to 5 min. walk from our office. There I saw a crowd, which was led by some local youngsters. There were lot of unknown people in the crowd. They were raising slogans like Khoon Ka Badla Khoon Se Lenge, Rajiv Gandhi Zindabad etc. They had set one part of the gurudwara on fire but they were not satisfied with that. I saw them going to other part of the gurudwara to set it on fire. I tried to stop them. All the three of us tried to convince them not to do this but the argument went very hot. I knew that the leader of the crowd as he was having a small shop in our locality. The next day I came to know that he was a local congress leader. He had also threatened by saying that if you come in our way we will also put you on fire. I have tried to contact the police on phone and my colleagues had gone to our office to bring the buckets to douse the fire. I tried to phone the control room of the police but no body picked up the phone. We had tried to douse the fire and also requested our neighbors to help us in doing so but our neighbors did not help us and told us that it was too dangerous to resist the crowd. We had noticed the policemen standing at a very short distance. They were watching the incident but they did nothing. So I had to approach the police and requested them to interfere but they told us that we should rather go home for our safety. We had then organized something like a joint defence with a view to see that the mob does not come and attack Sikh people in our locality. A group of persons belonging to both the communities had sat near the entry of our block and many of them had patrolled the area during the night. As a result of our joint defence, even when the mob had come thrice to our area to attack the Sikhs they were not successful. That is how we were able to control the mob. On 2nd November, 1984 when I was moving around and when I was near Moolchand area, I had seen two tempos wherein sticks and iron bars were loaded into them. I have also seen those sticks and iron bars being distributed among the young perons who had formed a mob there. I had seen a mob attacking shops of Sikhs in Lajpat Nagar area.
The interesting thing which I had noticed was that if the property belonged to Hindus and tenant was a Sikh in that case only looting of the articles were there. If the property belonged to Sikh, it was also burnt down. I registered myself as volunteer with Nagarik Ekta Manch which was formed on 2nd November, 1984. As volunteer of that manch, I had visited various places and relief camps. I was assigned the job of gathering information about the separate family and tried to unite them. While moving in the camps I had recorded various statements of women and on the basis of that some reports were published in Nov-Dec 84 issue of Manushi magazine. I am producing the copy of the Nov-Dec 84 issue of Manushi magazine [which is taken on recorded and marked as (W11/ 2)]. I had also come to know that many women were gang raped when their men were killed or in presence of their own children. The victims were of the age of 11 to 80 years. I tape recorded the interviews with the women and from what they had said I had found that a large number of Sikhs were killed. I had also come to know the manner in which they were killed From the account given by these women and some other males also, I came to the conclusion that it was massacre of Sikhs and it was not a case of Hindu-Sikh riots. The persons who had been interviewed by me had clearly stated that the police was either conniving with the mobs or had immobilized the Sikhs. Further details of connivance and immobilization are stated in the report published in the magazine which I have already produced on record. Within four days of my taking interviews of the various victims and others who knew about the incident, I had come to know that more than 2500 sikhs were killed, though it was reported by Government that 600 Sikhs were killed. Those perons also informed me that local congress workers were involved in the attacks on the Sikhs I have mentioned the details regarding what I was told in this behalf and the same is mentioned in the report published in our magazine Manushi.
Read over and found correct
(Ms.Madhu Kishwar) ( G.T. NANAVATI )
(Witness No: 11)
Name : Ms. Madhu Kishwar
Recalled for cross examination by Shri S.S. Gandhi, Senior Advocate on behalf of Delhi Police.
I had met Ms. Gurdeep Kaur in relief camp at Farsh Bazar. I do not remember if the Farsh Bazar relief camp was in the premises of the Farsh Bazar Police Station. I had tape recorded the statement of Ms. Gurdeep Kaur. I had visited the Farsh Bazar relief camp in the first week of November, 1984. I had not sent a copy of the statement of Ms. Gurdeep Kaur to any authority but the special issue of Manushi which carry the picture of Ms. Gurdeep Kaur and extracts were sent to various authorities including concerned officials of Home Ministry and the concerned police officers. The issue No. 25 must have been published either towards the end of November, 1984 or in the beginning of December, 1984. Whatever Ms. Gurdeep Kaur had disclosed to me regarding the identity of the persons consisting the mob was recorded in the issue No.25 of Manushi. I do not know if the statement of Ms. Gurdeep Kauar was recorded by the police on 17.11.1984 in case FIR No.426/84 which was registered at Police Station Kalyanpuri on 3.11.1984. With respect to paragraph 8 of my affidavit, I say that what I wanted to say was that the police authorities did not record their complaints accurately and this is made clear by the subsequent contents of the paragraph. I had, at times, recorded the statements of the victims and the survivors or at times taken notes also. Today I cannot say whose statement was tape recorded or whose statement was written in hand but I am sure about the fact that Ms. Gurdeep Kaurs statement was tape recorded. The information that was given to me with respect to the statement for not recording the statement accurately was given to me in the first week of November, 1984. I was a part of Nagrik Ekta Manch and everyday all persons working for it like me used to gather information and give it to each other. On the basis of the information thus collected, Nagrik Ekta Manch used to follow up the complaints for taking appropriate action by the authorities. The work which was assigned to me was to visit camp and try to unite the families whose family members are separated and therefore I do not know what were the efforts made by Nagrik Ekta Manch to see that appropriate FIRs were registered or not. In view of the work assigned to me I had not visited any police station for registration of any case except that in respect of the incident which had happened in my own locality. I had gone to the police station for the purpose of ensuring that the case was registered. I had gone to the police station on the day of incident itself. The police did not record the complaint and told me to go home as that was not the time for ladies like me to move out. The distance between my office and the police station Lajpat Nagar was about 10 minutes rikshaw ride. I did not know if ACP of Lajpat Nagar Police Station at that time was also having its office there. The mobs were looting and burning shops and houses. As it was my first exposure, I had not tried to find out the names of the shops or their owners. So in the case of houses also, I had not tried to ascertain the names. For some years after the incident, I used to remain in contact with the victims of the October November, 1984 riots. I had not advised any victim or any person whose statement was recorded by me to file an affidavit before Justice Ranganath Mishra Commission of Inquiry as by that time a Sikh Forum had taken over the work of representing the Sikhs. We were merely assisting the Forum in whatever way they required help. I had not filed any affidavit before Justice Ranganath Mishra Commission of Inquiry. I had not submitted the tape recorded statements or other statements before Justice Ranganth Mishra Commission of Inquiry but I had forwarded the copies of Manushi to that Commission.
No cross examination by Shri Ashok Kashyap, Advocate on behalf of Central Government.
Read over and found correct
(MS. MADHU KISHWAR) ( G.T. NANAVATI )