CJI refused to entertain Sidhu's plea seeking time to surrender to address some medical reasons
Chief Justice of India NV Ramana on Friday refused to entertain Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu's plea seeking some time before he surrenders in connection with the 1988 road rage case in which the top court on Thursday sentenced him to a year's imprisonment. The Congress leader, represented by senior advocate and Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi, said he needs some time to organise his medical issues. As Singhvi sought a hearing pertaining to Sidhu's request, the court asked him to make a formal appeal before chief justice NV Ramana for setting up a special bench to hear it today. As the issue was mentioned before the CJI refused to entertain an attempt by Singhvi to mention the case for an urgent sitting of the special bench.The Supreme Court on Thursday increased Navjot Singh Sidhu's punishment in the 34-year-old road rage case in which Gurnam Singh (65) had died. In 2018, Sidhu was let off with a fine of ₹1,000.
According to the prosecution, Gurnam Singh was beaten up by Sidhu in a road rage incident in December 1988. The victim was taken to a hospital where he was declared dead. Sidhu was acquitted by a trial court in September 1999, but this judgment was reversed by the Punjab and Haryana high court in December 2006. The high court held Sidhu and co-accused Rupinder Singh Sandhu guilty of culpable homicide not amounting to murder, sentencing them to three years in jail. They challenged this in the Supreme Court, which held Sidhu guilty under the minor charge of causing hurt while Sandhu was exonerated of all charges by an order in May 2018.After the Supreme Court announced its sentence, Sidhu said he accepts the verdict and will submit to the "majesty of law".
The fresh appeal for some time before Sidhu goes to jail came last minute as the Congress leader was supposed to surrender before a court in Patiala on Friday and accordingly, some party men and supporters reached Sidhu's residence in the morning. Patiala District Congress Committee president Narinder Pal Lali, in a message to party supporters on Thursday night, had said that Navjot Singh Sidhu would reach the court at 10am, news agency PTI reported.
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