The Central Bureau of Investigation in the Supreme Court on Monday opposed former Congress leader Sajjan Kumar’s bail plea in the 1984 anti-Sikh violence case, PTI reported. The investigation agency described Kumar as the kingpin of the violence.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the CBI, said a decision to grant Kumar bail would be a “travesty of justice” as he is facing trial in a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case at the Patiala House district court here.

Mehta told the bench of Justices SA Bobde and SA Nazeer that the agency was currently recording prosecution evidence and that a direction from the Supreme Court to the trial court could expedite the case.

The bench asked the agency to apprise it of the status in the ongoing trial. The Supreme Court set the next hearing in Kumar’s bail plea for April 15.

The Delhi High Court had in December 2018 sentenced Kumar to life imprisonment and held him guilty of murder, promoting enmity between groups, and defiling public property. The Delhi High Court’s verdict had reversed a lower court’s 2013 judgement acquitting Kumar. He was sent to jail after he surrendered before a trial court on December 31. He also resigned from the Congress.

Kumar’s legal counsel told the court that a key witness in the case had not identified the former Congress leader in any of her four prior statements and only named him in her latest. Kumar’s counsel asked the court to consider the fact that Kumar did not misuse his anticipatory bail priveleges.

The violence against Sikhs in early November 1984 had followed the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. The case in which Kumar was convicted is related to the murder of five Sikhs in Delhi Cantonment’s Raj Nagar Part-I area and arson at a gurdwara in Raj Nagar Part-II.