July 27, 2012 | By Sikh Siyasat Bureau
New York, US (July 27, 2012): There are fresh updates in Sikh Genocide 1984 related suit that is being heard by a US Federal court. As per recent reports a United States Process Server (USPS) has affirmed through an affidavit before US Federal Court that the delivery of summons and complaint to the Central Authority of India was completed. It is notable that USPS is responsible for service of summons abroad pursuant to “Hague Service Convention”.
It is notable that in a submission dated July 13, 2012 to the US Federal Court the Congress Party had claimed that it did not receive the summons related to this suit. Now the Hague process server, in the affidavit that was submitted on July 20, has urged the Federal Judge presiding over the “Sikh Genocide” case to deny the Congress Party’s July 13 claim that they have not received summons of the US court.
The affidavit affirms that the process of delivery of Summons was completed as per requirements of the Hague Convention in the case filed against Indian National Congress by Sikhs For Justice and Survivor victims of Sikh genocide 1984.
Earlier, on July 18 Judge Robert W. Sweet of US Federal Court reserved the decision on the issues of effective service of summons and personal jurisdiction in the Sikh Genocide Case.
“Meanwhile on the basis of evidence from Process Forwarding International (PFI), which is also official Process Server to “United States Department of Justice” and “United States Department of State”, showing delivery of summons on Central Authority of India, SFJ on July 20 filed a motion before Judge Sweet requesting: jurisdictional discovery; a declaration that service has been affected ; and leave to further amend the complaint to add the name of Sonia Gandhi, President of Congress Party” reports Times of India (TOI).
Rick Hamilton, Director of PFI in his notarized statement to the court declares that “in March 2011, the plaintiffs (Sikhs for Justice) retained PFI to effect service pursuant to Hague Service Convention on Indian National Congress in India. On March 28, the summons, complaints and appropriate documentations and forms were delivered to the Central Authority in India” thus completing the requirements of service as per Hague Service Convention. Hamilton’s affidavit further stated that “unfortunately, it has been my experience with the Central Authority in India in recent years that they simply do not respond.”
SFJ’s July 20 submissions to the court also include affidavit of PFI, status report from PFI stating that “the process service request was received by the Indian Authorities March 28, 2011 via Fedex, Tracking 794567536700. As of July 17, 2012 no confirmation of service or any reason service would not be made has been received from the Indian Authorities.”
Central Authority of India has been established by Government of India for receiving and serving judicial documents from foreign courts pursuant to Hague Convention on Service Abroad of 1965 which has been signed by India and United States.
According to Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, legal advisor of SFJ, said that under Article 15 of the Hague Convention service is considered complete once copy of Summons and Complaint is delivered to the Central Authority.
On March 1, 2011, a class action law suit was filed by Sikhs For Justice and victims of November 1984 Sikh Genocide under Alien Tort Statute (ATS) and Torture Victim Protection Act (TVPA) against Congress (I) for conspiring, aiding, abetting and carrying out Genocidal attacks on Sikhs in November 1984.
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