JALANDHAR: Responding to summons issued by US court in first week of September 2013 in rights violation case filed by Sikhs For Justice against her for protecting perpetrators of massacre of Sikhs in Delhi in November 1984,Congress President Sonia Gandhi has held that she was not in New York during the relevant period (when summons were issued or claimed to be served on her) and no summons or complaint were served on her.
Sonia’s counsel Ravi Batra has challenged the US Court jurisdiction to hear the rights violation case. Batra also submitted a signed letter sent by Sonia Gandhi to him on letter head of “All India Congress Committee” in which she made these claims.
“I was not in New York during the relevant period, namely, from September 2, 2013 to September 9, 2013. I was not served the Summons and Complaint on September 9, 2013, as claimed, or on any other date in 13 Civ.4920,” said letter signed by Sonia Gandhi on December 28 last.
However SFJ legal advisor Gurpatwant Singh Pannun said that on September 9, upon information and belief that Congress President was undergoing medical checkup at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York the summons and complaint were served on hospital and security staff of the hospital as the court had allowed the service of summons through hospital staff or her security agents.
In response to US Court Summons, Sonia Gandhi also filed a motion with Court to dismiss the human rights violation lawsuit pursuant to: lack of personal jurisdiction; for insufficient service of process; for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction; and for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. Congress Presidents motion also urged the court for “Enjoining plaintiff Sikhs For Justice from filing any lawsuit or otherwise pursuing these claims or any other claims stemming from or related to allegations of conduct in India in 1984, post-assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by her security personnel without first having secured the express written consent of the court.
Pannun stated that victims of November 1984 filed human rights violation complaint against Sonia Gandhi invoking the US Federal court jurisdiction over the case based on Alien Tort Statute (ATS), 28 U.S.C. 1350; the Torture Victim Protection Act of 1992 (TVPA); 28 U.S.C. 1331 and Federal Common Law.
Federal Eastern District Court of New York (13 CV 4920) issued Summons against Congress President on the complaint filed by SFJ and victims of 1984 demanding a jury trial seeking compensatory and punitive damages against Congress party President for her role in shielding and protecting Kamal Nath, Sajjan Kumar, Jagdish Tytlerand other Congress party leaders from being prosecuted for their crimes against humanity.