1988 road rage case: 'I have been stabbed in the back', says Sidhu
Navjot Singh Sidhu on Friday voiced his displeasure with his own government by saying that 'I have been stabbed in the back' and said he will submit to the law on his 1988 road rage case, according to media reports.
His comment came after the Punjab government, of which he is a part, favoured awarding a three-year jail term to Sidhu in 1988 road rage case.
"I don't have any reactions. You submit to the majesty of the law," Sidhu was quoted as saying, by news agency ANI.
Amrendra Singh-led Punjab government on Thursday favoured the Punjab and Haryana High Court verdict convicting and awarding a three-year jail term to its minister Navjot Singh Sidhu in a 1988 road rage case.
The cricketer-turned-politician, who deserted the BJP and joined the Congress days before the Punjab assembly election last year, holds the tourism portfolio in the Amrendra Singh Cabinet.
A bench of Justices J Chelameswar and Sanjay Kishan Kaul which is hearing the 30-year-old case was told by the state government that as per the evidence Gurnam Singh, a Patiala resident, had died after he was given fist blow by Sidhu.
Appearing for the Punjab government, Advocate Sanram Singh Saron said: "There is not a single evidence which suggest that the cause of death was cardiac arrest and not brain haemorrhage as concluded by the trial court".
He said, "The trial court verdict was rightly set aside by the High Court. Accused A1 (Navjot Singh Sidhu) had given fist blow to deceased Gurnam Singh leading to his death through brain hemorrhage".
Concluding his arguments, Saron said the trial court was wrong in its finding the man died of cardiac arrest and not brain hemorrhage.
The bench questioned the state government's counsel as to at what stage did the police identified co-accused Rupinder Singh Sandhu who was in the vehicle and how it concluded his involvement in the crime.
Sidhu was acquitted of the murder charges of Gurnam Singh by the trial court in September 1999.
However, the high court reversed the verdict and held him and co-accused Rupinder Singh Sandhu guilty of culpable homicide not amounting to murder in December, 2006.
The high court sentenced them to three-year imprisonment and imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh each on the convicts.
In 2007, the apex court stayed the conviction of Sidhu and Sandhu in the case, paving the way for him to contest the by-poll for the Amritsar Lok Sabha seat.
As per the prosecution case, Sidhu and Sandhu were allegedly present in a Gypsy parked near Sheranwala Gate Crossing on December 27, 1988, when Gurnam Singh, Jaswinder Singh and one other were going to the bank to withdraw money for a marriage function.
As they reached Sheranwala Gate Crossing, Gurnam Singh driving a maruti car found a Gypsy in between the road and asked the occupant Sidhu and Sandhu to remove the vehicle for their passage following which the heated exchange took place.
Singh was beaten up by Sidhu and later fled the crime scene. The injured was taken to a hospital, where he was declared dead.
OneIndia News (with PTI inputs)