Home / Politics / News /  Navjot Singh Sidhu to surrender in Patiala court today

Former Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu will surrender before a local court in Patiala today in a 1988 road rage case in which a 65-year-old man got killed. Yesterday, the Supreme Court ordered a one-year jail term for Sidhu, observing that consequences of loss of temper must be borne.

Patiala District Congress Committee president Narinder Pal Lali said Sidhu would reach the court at 10 am. He also urged party supporters to reach the court complex around 9:30 am.

After the apex court announced its decision, Sidhu's wife, Navjot Kaur Sidhu, reached Patiala from Amritsar around 9:45 pm.

Pronouncing the verdict on Thursday, the Supreme Court said any undue sympathy to impose an inadequate sentence would do more harm to the justice system and undermine the public confidence in the efficacy of law.

Sidhu, 58, took to Twitter to say he "will submit to the majesty of law" as the cricketer-turned-politician rode an elephant in Patiala earlier in the day to register a symbolic protest against rising prices of essential commodities.

A bench of Justices A M Khanwilkar and S K Kaul allowed a review plea filed by the victim's family on the issue of the sentence awarded to Sidhu.

Though the apex court had in May 2018 held Sidhu guilty of the offence of "voluntarily causing hurt" to the 65-year-old man in the case, it spared him a jail term and imposed a fine of 1,000.

"...we feel there is an error apparent on the face of record...therefore, we have allowed the review application on the issue of sentence. In addition to the fine imposed, we consider it appropriate to impose a sentence of imprisonment for a period of one year...," the bench said while pronouncing the verdict.

The family of Gurnam Singh, who died in the incident, said they finally got justice after 34 years and thanked the Almighty.

"We are thankful and grateful to God. We have finally got justice after 34 years," Gurnam Singh's son Narvedinder Singh said.

"We are satisfied with the verdict," he said over the phone.

Asked about her reaction to the verdict, Gurnam Singh's daughter-in-law Parveen Kaur said, "We thank Baba Ji (Almighty). We had left it to Baba ji. Whatever Baba Ji has done is right."

Replying to a question, Parveen Kaur said, "We are satisfied with the verdict."

The family resides at Ghalori village, five kilometre from Patiala city.

Sabby Singh, the grandson of Gurnam Singh, also thanked God.

Sidhu, a former BJP MP, had switched over to the Congress ahead of the 2017 assembly polls.

In 2004, Sidhu began his political innings by contesting the Lok Sabha elections on a BJP ticket from Amritsar, where he shifted his base from Patiala, and in his first election, defeated Congress heavyweight R L Bhatia.

When he was in the BJP, Sidhu had frosty relations with the Badal family despite the SAD then being an ally of the BJP. Later, his ties with the BJP also turned cold when the party fielded senior leader Arun Jaitley from Amritsar in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.

Though he was accommodated in the Rajya Sabha later, Sidhu quit the party to join the Congress.

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