The Supreme Court on Monday said the plea on the suspension of former Congress leader Sajjan Kumar’s life sentence in the 1984 anti-Sikh riot case would be heard in May next year, PTI reported. 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.

Justices SA Bobde and BR Gavai said that this was not an “ordinary case” and that it would require further hearing before an order was passed. “The case is an example of the failure of entire police administration for 22 years,” Bar and Bench quoted senior counsel Dushyant Dave as saying. “Even original FIR [first information report] went missing from records.”

In April, the top court had said that it would hear Kumar’s bail application in August. Opposing the bail plea, the Central Bureau of Investigation had then told the court that the 73-year-old’s crime was of a “gruesome nature” and described it as genocide.

The Delhi High Court’s verdict had reversed a lower court’s 2013 judgement, which had acquitted Kumar. He was sent to jail after he surrendered before a trial court on December 31. Kumar had also resigned from the Congress after his conviction.