SC rejects yet another plea for SIT probe into Kashmiri Pandit exodus

The Supreme Court on Monday rejected yet another plea seeking an inquiry by a Special Investigation Team (SIT) into the killings and forced exodus of Kashmiri Pandits.

A bench of Justices B R Gavai and C T Ravikumar declined to entertain the plea filed by Ashutosh Taploo, son of Tikalal Taploo, who was shot dead by Pakistan-backed terrorists in September 1990.

The court noted that it had not entertained a similar petition earlier this week. With the court not inclined to entertain his petition, the petitioner withdrew it.

On September 2, the bench refused to entertain a plea seeking directions to set up an SIT “to identify the perpetrators who were involved (in), aided and abetted” the alleged killings “of Hindus and Sikhs in Jammu and Kashmir during the period from 1989-2003” and to prosecute them. The court then asked the petitioner, the NGO We the Citizens, to approach the central government.

In July 2017, a bench of then Chief Justice of India J S Khehar and Justice D Y Chandrachud dismissed a similar public-interest petition filed by Roots in Kashmir, a body representing Kashmiri Pandits. The bench said “the instances referred to in” the petition “pertain to 1989-90, and more than 27 years have passed”.

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