Navjot Singh Sidhu, the tourism minister in the Congress government in Punjab, has been convicted of voluntarily causing hurt under section 323 of the Indian Penal Code. He has, however, been acquitted of “culpable homicide not amounting to murder” charges under section 304 ( (II) in the road rage case by the Supreme Court.
Sidhu and his friend were acquitted by the Sessions Court of Patiala on September 22, 1999, due to lack of evidence in the case. The Punjab and Haryana High Court later reversed his acquittal and held the cricketer-turned-politician along with his friend Sandhu guilty of culpable homicide not amounting to murder in December 2006. Sidhu was given three-years imprisonment in a road rage case, which happened three decades back in 1988.
According to the prosecution, Sidhu and Sandhu were allegedly in a Gypsy which was parked in the middle of a road near the Sheranwala Gate Crossing in Patiala on December 27, 1988. Sidhu and his friend have gone to the bank to withdraw money. It was alleged that it led to heated exchanges when Gurnam Singh, who was driving a Maruti car, found the Gypsy in the middle of the road and asked Sidhu and Sandhu to remove it.
The police had claimed that Singh was beaten up by Sidhu who later fled the crime scene. The victim was taken to a hospital where he was declared dead.
A bench of Justices J Chelameswar and Sanjay Kishan Kaul have given their judgment in the case in which Sidhu had claimed that the medical report was “vague”.
Sidhu quit the BJP in the run-up to Punjab elections after the party decided to contest Arun Jaitley from Amritsar.
With Inputs from PTI