Punjab CM tells US court summons not properly served

Last Updated: Sat, Sep 01, 2012 06:25 hrs

New York, Sep 1 (IANS) Responding to a US court's summons, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has sought additional 90 days to defend charges of human rights violations filed against him by a Sikh group.

In its lawsuit, Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) has accused Badal shielding the police officers responsible for torture, extra judicial killings and continuous human rights violations against the Sikh community in Punjab.

On SFJ complaint, US District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin on Aug 8 issued summons against Badal, who was in Wisconsin on a private visit to attend the marriage of a business tycoon's daughter.

According to SFJ, Badal's attorney Michelle L. Jacobs submitted a motion before the US court asking it "to dismiss for failure to effectuate service; or in the alternative for an additional 90 days to file a responsive pleading".

SFJ legal advisor Gurpatwant Singh Pannun said since the issue of summons against Badal, scores of Sikhs have come forward with more charges of abuses and want to be part of the case against Badal before the US Court.

SFJ will amend the complaint against Badal to add additional charges, plaintiffs and witnesses who have suffered custodial abuses and torture, he said.

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