BEFORE JUSTICE NANAVATI COMMISSION OF INQUIRY

(Witness No: 168)

 

Name              :           Shri Jaipal Singh

Age                 :           Years

Occupation    :           Assistant Commissioner of Police, Sub Division Daryaganj.

Address           :        

 

            On SA

 

            In October, 1984 I was posted as SHO, Police Station Mehrauli.  On 31.10.1984, I was informed by DCP, South  through Control Room to proceed to AIIMS.  I reached AIIMS sometime in the Noon.  I remained there till about 9.00 P.M.  As there was message on wireless set that I should go back to my area, I had been to my police station.  Messages were also received to the effect that we should remain alert in our area.  No untoward incident had taken place within the area of my police station on 31.10.84.  

 

            On 1.11.1984, at about 8.00 A.M., I had received a message that there was some tension in Village Chattarpur so I had gone there.  Tension had arisen because of the dispute between one Shyam Lal and one Sardar Banta Singh.  Shyam Lal had lodged a complaint against Banta Singh that he had distributed sweets on 31.10.1984  after  hearing about the death of  Mrs. Indira Gandhi.  It turned out that Banta Singh had organized a ‘LANGER’ on account of the death of his mother.  In view of the tension, I had brought Shri Banta Singh to the police station for his safety.  At about 10’O Clock I had received a message that there is some tension at Dairy Chowk  Mahipal Pur.   The Police Officer Incharge of the police post was present with his force.  One Sikh family was  staying in Mahipalpur and for their safety I posted two Constables at their house.  Then I received a message that a mob had gathered at Taxela farm near Village Ghitorni.  The farm belonged  to a Sardar.  There was a mob of about 1500 persons.  It appeared  that the mob had set the property of sardar on fire.  Therefore, a cane charge was resorted to and the mob was dispersed.  I had also fired three shots for  that purpose.  I had also send message for sending fire brigade and more force but neither of them was available.  Sometime in the afternoon there was again a message from Mahipalpur.  When I reached there, I was informed that some Sikhs had taken shelter in one Pandit’s house.  When I went inside the house I found dead bodies of two Sikhs and three more Sikhs were injured.  I had taken the injured to the hospital in my vehicle.  I had also registered an offence of murder.  I had received messages and pursuant to those messages I had visited those places and taken appropriate steps.  All the incidents which had happened within the jurisdiction of my police station are stated in the report at pages 1 to 6 in file (Ex.No.W108/73).

 

            In the evening I had received a message that an incident had taken place at Chatwal Farm in Village Samalkha.  When I went there Additional DCP (South) was present and Chatwal and his friends were also present.  Myself, Additional DCP(South) and Chatwal’s friend requested him to move to a safer place but he refused.  As there was tension, we therefore, posted one ASI and two Constables armed with rifles for his security.  At around 9.00 P.M. late in the evening I had received a message that there was a fire in Chatwal Farm.  I, therefore, rushed to that place and found that the poultry farm was put on fire and all th       e 5 members of the Chatwal family were killed.  I also learned that ASI had resorted to firing but was not able to control the mob.  FIR 413/84 was registered in respect of that incident.  The accused in the case were subsequently arrested and a challan was filed. 

 

            In the afternoon, I had received a message that there was some trouble near the Gurudwara at Andheria Mode.  When I went there I found that Gurudwara was set on fire.  I had come to know that rioteous mob had set the Gurudwara on fire.  About 25 children were trapped  in the Gurudwara.  I rescued them and took them to a safer place.

 

            On 2.11.1984  Onkar  Farm, Rajokri village was attacked by the mob.  I rushed to that place.  There was a mob of about 50 to 60 persons.  They had damaged the property  by setting it on fire in the farm.  Out of  them 14  persons  were arrested by me on the spot.  My staff and the farm labourers  had extinguished the fire.  Additional DCP (South) had also visited that place.  There was no other major incident on 2.11.1984 or  thereafter.

 

            In reply to the question No.7 of the questionnaire, it is stated that case FIR No.402/84 was registered on 31.10.84.  It is clarified that incident was not related to Anti – Sikh Riots. 

 

            I had made some preventive arrests on 1.11.1984 and subsequently also.  The details thereof are contained on 37 of file (Ex. W108/73).  It also contains details of the property recovered by the police.  I remained SHO of  that police station till November, 1985.  In most of the cases investigation was completed by that time and chargesheets were filed.

 

[Cross examination deferred]

           

            Read over and found correct

 

                       (JAIPAL SINGH)                                                                               ( G.T. NANAVATI )

                     20th February, 2002                                                                          20th February, 2002

 

BEFORE JUSTICE NANAVATI COMMISSION OF INQUIRY

 

(Witness No: 168)

 

Name              :           Shri Jaipal Singh

Age                 :           Years

Occupation    :           Assistant Commissioner of Police, Sub Division Daryaganj.

Address           :        

 

            On SA

 

            The area falling within Mehrauli Police Station was very large in October – November, 1984.  Now that area has three police stations.  While going from one village to another it was necessary to go first to Mehrauli and then go to other villages as many villages were not linked with each other.

 

Cross examination by Shri N.S. Bawa, Advocate on behalf of Nov.’84 Carnage Justice Committee.

 

            It is true, as stated in my report that  in  all 32 vehicles were burnt between 31.10.84 to 4.11.84.  According to me, the figure stated in reply to the questionnaire in this behalf  is not correct.  According to my report, in all 107 incidents have taken place during those days. It is true that as against question No.12 in reply to the question as to how may complaints have been received, it is stated that question cannot be answered, as no record is available.  All the incidents had come to our knowledge through the various police personnel in the area.  I had not come to know about them because of any complaint by any victim or victims.  I had received some complaints after 4.11.84 and I had registered offences on the basis of those complaints.  It is true that FIR No.405 covers more than one incident; I cannot say whether it covers 33 incidents as suggested.  I can give the exact number after going through FIR and verifying from  the case  file.  Similarly, I cannot say without verification whether FIR No.408 involves 8 incidents, FIR 410 involves 9 incidents, FIR 411 involves 16 incidents and FIR 424 involves 4 incidents.  I say that Shri Jai Pal Singh was arrested in case FIR No.406 on 4.11.84 and not on 1.11.84.  Only FIR  is  dated 1.11.84.  20.12.86 is the date of acquittal and not the date of release.  Similarly, in case FIR No.413/84 the persons mentioned in question No.13 were arrested on 23.3.85 and were acquitted on 29.10.91.  I say that in that column wherever the word ‘Release’ is mentioned it should be read as ‘Acquittal’.  1.11.84 is the date of FIR.

 

I knew the leading Congress leaders residing in the area falling within the jurisdiction of my police station.  I knew that Shri Jai Pal Singh was a Congress worker.  I did not know whether he had contested any municipal election.  I had investigated case FIR No.419/84.  I had taken all steps for identification of the dead bodies in this case.  As per record, the bodies were not identified.  For the purpose of identification of the dead bodies, I had informed Missing Persons Squad, Police Control Room and  SSPs/DCPs  all over India.  In that behalf I had written letter to Incharge Crime Record Bureau (CRB) on 13.11.84 for publication in Gazette.  It is true that on 5.12.84, I had received a letter from ACP, Hauz Khas wherein some instructions were given for the purpose of identification of those dead bodies. 

 

Gurudwara Mehrauli is about 400 meters from the Mehrauli Police Station.  That Gurudwara was attacked by a mob but with the intervention of police further attack on it was saved.  A few shops around that Gurudwara were damaged by the mob.   The incident of Gurudwara, Mehrauli is covered by FIR No.405/84.  It is not correct to say that the properties which were looted from the shops were placed by the looters outside their houses on their own without efforts by the police, I say that they were recovered by the police from them.  I say that the property which is mentioned as abandoned in the reply to the questionnaire was also recovered abandoned because of the efforts made by the police.  It may be that the vehicles which were recovered by the police were burnt as stated in reply to question No.29.

 

As far as I remember, there were 5 Gurudwaras within the jurisdiction of  Mehrauli Police Station.  I had not specifically posted any policemen near any of those Gurudwaras but the policemen were generally directed to cover all the areas where Sikh population was there.  There were about 50 farm houses of Sikhs and they were all scattered and population of Sikhs was also scattered in  Mehrauli Chattarpur, Sultanpur  and Gadhaipur.  As per Wireless Log Book, I had asked for extra force on 1.11.84 at 11.20 A.M. and again at 14.16 P.M. and also at 18.30 P.M. and at  18.35 P.M.  I cannot explain why that fact is not mentioned in the entry made in the Wireless Log Book at 11.20 P.M.  I had, in fact, sent the requisition but I cannot say why that person, who had written the entry, has not written like that.  I had not sent the message at 18.30 P.M. for additional force of one company only because there was an earlier message that some Sikhs were firing from the Gurudwara but it was for the purpose of general maintenance of law and order.

 

  The version, which I had mentioned in FIR No. 413/84 was disclosed by me to others also as and when it was required to do so.  It is true that in the FIR it is  not mentioned that I had told Chatwal and his family to accompany me so that I could save their lives.  I cannot say why it is not so mentioned in the FIR as it was not written by me.  It is also true that it is not mentioned in the FIR that Additional DCP (South) had also visited that place and he had also said like that to the family of Chatwal.  ASI Ganesh Tiwari was issued a Show Cause Notice for censure for lapse on his part as inspite of his presence the Chatwal family was not protected.  It is true that none of those three police officers were injured during that incident.  I had made a request to Chatwal in the presence of Additional DCP(South) and one Mr. Harish who was Chatwal familiy’s friend.  As I was not summoned by any Court and therefore I had not deposed about that incident before any court or authority, prior to this.  It is true that the police had not arrested anyone at the time of the incident covered by FIR No.403, 404, 405, 406, 407, 409, 410, 411 and 413 as our primary aim was to disperse the crowd and protect the family and their properties.  The fore was not adequate and the mobs were too big.

 

No cross examination by Shri Ashok Kashyap, Advocate on behalf of Central Government.

           

            Read over and found correct

 

 

(JAIPAL SINGH)                                                                               (G.T. NANAVATI )

25th February, 2002                                                                          25th February, 2002