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India death sentence over anti-Sikh riots

Monitoring Desk

New Delhi: An Indian court Tuesday handed down a rare death sentence over anti-Sikh riots in 1984 that left nearly 3,000 dead following the assassination of prime minister Indira Gandhi.

Relatives of victims rejoiced in New Delhi after the judge announced the death sentence, the first since 1996. It follows the setting up of a special probe in 2015.

The 1984 carnage erupted just hours after then-premier Gandhi was killed by her Sikh bodyguards.

It lasted three days with Sikhs molested and murdered, their homes and businesses torched.

The violence across the country but mostly in New Delhi saw people dragged from their homes and burned alive. Few have been brought to justice over the massacre, with government-appointed commissions in the past failing to prosecute more than a handful of minor cases.

Gandhi was shot dead after ordering Indian troops to storm the Golden Temple, Sikhism’s holiest shrine in the northern state of Punjab.

 

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