Tuesday, Jul 05, 2022

Beant Singh assassination: SC asks Centre to decide Rajoana's plea for commutation of death penalty

The Supreme Court Monday directed the Centre to decide within two months Balwant Singh Rajoana's plea that his death penalty in the 1995 assassination of former Punjab chief minister Beant Singh be commuted to life imprisonment because of his lengthy incarceration of nearly 26 years.

Balwant Singh Rajoana PTI

A bench headed by Justice Uday Umesh Lalit said the pendency of appeals of other co-convicts in the apex court in the case would not come in the way of authorities in deciding Rajoana’s plea. Rajoana, a former Punjab police constable, was convicted for involvement in an explosion outside the Punjab civil secretariat that killed Beant Singh and 16 others on August 31, 1995.

The top court has been hearing Rajoana’s plea seeking commutation of the death sentence to life term because he has been in jail for 26 years. A special court had in July 2007 awarded the death sentence to Rajoana in the case.