By Saurabh Sahni:
And finally after 17 years of delay, Balwant Singh Rajoana is sentenced to hang till death for assassinating Punjab Chief Minister Beant Singh.
The year was 1995 when Babbar Khalsa terrorist Balwant Singh Rajoana was found guilty in the assassination of then Chief Minister of Punjab, Beant Singh. It took 17 years for the Court to issue a death sentence to Balwant Singh.
The issue caught everyone’s eye yet again after the hanging of the assassin -Balwant Singh, was delayed after a petition was filed by the SGPC, a religious Sikh body. This delay has indeed brought the Punjab politics in turmoil. While the ruling Akali Dal has been campaigning against the hanging of the International terrorist, its coalition partner BJP has been against such a practice.
The hanging was to take place on March 31st, but was delayed after the order passed by the State Government. The current Chief Minister of Punjab, Parkash Singh Badal, met the President of India, Pratibha Patil, to demand for mercy for Balwant singh. It was way back in 2007 when the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had awarded death sentence to Balwant Singh and another terrorist Jagtar Singh Hawara after being found involved in the Beant Singh assassination case.
Beant Singh was the Chief Minister of Punjab from 1992-1995 and was well credited for reducing terrorist control over the city. That was the main reason of his assassination by a human bomb, Dilawar Singh, at the high security Punjab civil secretariat on August 31, 1995.
The delay in the hanging of Balwant Singh has greatly disturbed the normal life in Punjab. Apart from the daylong shutdown of shops, people are coming out on roads to protest the scheduled hanging of the assassinator. Rail and road traffic increased great in the past few days, Board examination was delayed, offices recorded very thin attendance and mass groups were seen protesting outside Golden Temple for the same.
In the 11-year trial period of the assassination, Rajoara had accepted the fact that he was the sole-responsible person for killing Beant Singh. Balwant Singh refused to challenge the death sentence that was awarded to him but it is because of the ruling party Akali Dal, who is demanding for clemency for him, that he hasn’t been hanged till now.
People who have been accusing Balwant Singh for killing the then CM probably have not made an effort to know about his life and why he did that. He was never a terrorist, but was in the Indian police force. He was forced to do what he did and no longer advocates violence. He has been in jail for half of his life and thus, many people believe the justice has already been served. Hanging Balwant Singh will serve no good to the government, but would indeed kill the feelings of harmony and justice among the common men of Punjab.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the article above are the writer’s own and not of YouthKiAwaaz.com
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