New York: A US federal appeals court in Manhattan has set August 18 for oral arguments in a case filed by a Sikh rights group against Congress party chairperson Sonia Gandhi.
The lawsuit filed by Sikhs For Justice (SFJ) accuses Sonia Gandhi of shielding, protecting and rewarding the perpetrators of violence against Sikhs in November 1984 in the aftermath of the assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.
The court is set to hear the oral arguments on whether the 1984 claims are barred under US Supreme Court case Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum.
It would also hear arguments on if two individuals Jasbir Singh and Mohender Singh are proper plaintiffs on behalf of their family members and whether rights group has associational standing to file the lawsuit.
In June 2014, a federal judge dismissed the lawsuit against Sonia Gandhi ruling that she is not liable under Torture Victims Protection Act (TVPA) and that the plaintiffs have no standing to bring the lawsuit.
In their appeal, SFJ and 1984 victims invoked the principle of international law that “those who cover up a crime are just as guilty as the ones who commit it”.
The allegations against Sonia Gandhi include shielding and protecting Kamal Nath, Jagdish Tytler, Sajjan Kumar and other Congress party leaders.
“We have a strong argument that US Supreme Court’s decision in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum does not bar the law suit against human rights violators when the victims have no other recourse,” said SFJ legal advisor Gurpatwant Singh Pannun.
In September 2013, a class action suit was filed against Sonia Gandhi by SFJ and victims of 1984 under Alien Tort Claims Act (ATCA) and Torture Victim Protection Act (TVPA). (IANS)
Sometimes I feel too confused that what makes a leader speak so badly about the country. Still more confusing is that the same leader is projected as the only fittest in the country to be the Prime Minister.
This time from foreign soil, Germany, Rahul Gandhi has spoken out his mind. With gay abandon he claimed the lack of employment is the cause behind the rise of ISIS. If we analyze such statement objectively, we see that the unprecedented danger is looming large around this country not because of the citizens but because of the irresponsible leaders.
Is it not too shocking that we tolerate a bunch of leaders all through who, with impunity, tramples upon prudence and embrace the fickleness by speaking with such rashness? The ridiculous ranting is what Rahul Gandhi is good at. How many immature gaffes he has committed in last one year. One finds it too sickening to see people defending what Rahul utters out? Again, to his party’s sycophants, each word spoken out by him is worth its weight in gold.
Could any conscious people come across the board to evaluate what will be the likely repercussion when the projected leader goes to the extent to connect the unemployment of youth with ISIS? What do you say — if a certain father harps on that his children will be dagger-wielding murderers if they will not get jobs? What message does it send out? Will such ideas not “viciously affect” the thought process of the children in future? One wonders how the constitution allows the leaders to speak out such dangerous language. Will it not encourage the treasonous activities within the country leading to the decline of the security and sovereignty of the nation?
Despite the height of stupidity, Rahul Gandhi is capable to earn more admirers then criticizers. Is it a pointer to the fact that one man’s loss of sense should lead to the “loss of sense” of other intellectuals? Or do we love an “individual” from a particular family more than our own “country”? On what ground is an “individual” more respect-worthy than the “party”, country and its constitutional ethos? This is in fact a very ominous trend which this country is witnessing now.
True, our Indian polity needs a strong opposition. People do not disagree at all that Congress should not be the one. Yes, this party can alone match well with the rival BJP. But sadly, the party is failing when Rahul started to become more vocal. The party with so smaller number of MPs has not yet “acknowledged” that its rapid decline now is because it continues to sing a hymn to one family only. The conscious Congress party leaders should come down to the ground and critically assess the people’s opinions and their concerns. They all have been intensely disillusioned by the dynasty politics.
Has this “family” not pleasantly ignored a very learned and seasoned leader Pranab Mukherjee by reducing him to just a rubber stamp? Are Sachin Pilot, Ghulam Nabi Azad, C. P. Joshi, Ashok Gehlot, Jyotiraditya, Scindia, Priya Dutt, less Indian? If BJP can groom Kiren Rijiju why can’t Congress groom the astute leader of the northeast like Gaurav Gogoi or Vincent Pala or Mukul Sangma ? No exaggeration, Sachin Pilot could diplomatically handle the political situation and articulate the party policies far more maturely than entire Gandhi family members put together.
Enough is enough. People now anxiously await the REVIVAL of political parties with vibrant faces who genuinely love the country. We have seen enough of the anti-nation activities incited by the Gandhi family. It’s totally wrong to be the puppets of a wrong family and spell doom for the nation. PM Modi rightly says that service to the country is far more important than the service to the family.
Salil Gewali is a well-known writer and author of ‘Great minds on India’. Twitter: @SGewali.