Chandigarh, January 25
Facing the gallows after being convicted in Punjab’s former Chief Minister Beant Singh’s assassination case, former Punjab police constable Balwant Singh Rajoana on Tuesday moved the Punjab and Haryana High Court seeking parole for attending his father’s last rites.
In his petition filed through counsel Vivek K Thakur, Rajoana submitted that he was in custody for the last 26 years and was awarded the death penalty on July 27, 2007. Thakur submitted on the petitioner’s behalf that he filed an application before the jail authorities seeking permission to attend the last rites of his father.
It was stated that his father was the only person taking care of him in the jail and continuously meeting him for the last 26 years. As such, he may be permitted to attend the last rites. His request was, however, rejected on the ground that he could not be released on parole since he was undergoing a death sentence.
Thakur submitted that the Supreme Court in similar circumstances allowed a parole petition filed by a convict undergoing a death sentence to attend his mother’s last rites after being escorted by the police. The petition is scheduled to come up for hearing on January 27.
The former Chief Minister was assassinated in a blast outside the Punjab Civil Secretariat on August 31, 1995. Human bomb Dilawar Singh too was killed in the explosion, along with 16 others.