NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court will on Tuesday pronounce the judgement in 1988 road rage case involving Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu.
In April 2018, the Punjab government, of which he is a part, had sought conviction of Congress leader in connection with the 30-year-old case. It had told the Supreme Court that the Punjab and Haryana High Court was correct in convicting its incumbent minister.
The cricketer-turned-politician, who deserted the BJP and joined the Congress days before the Punjab assembly elections in 2017, holds the tourism portfolio in the Chief Minister Amarinder Singh Cabinet.
Counsel for the Punjab government had told a bench of Justices comprising Justice J Chelameswar and Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul that the statement given by Sidhu denying his involvement in the case was false.
The state government counsel had further told the apex court that the victim had died after he was given fist blow by Sidhu. Identified as 65-year-old Gurnam Singh, the victim was a resident of Patiala.
Sidhu was acquitted of the murder charges of Gurnam Singh by the trial court in September 1999.
However, the High Court reversed the verdict and held him and co-accused Rupinder Singh Sandhu guilty of culpable homicide not amounting to murder in December 2006.
The high court sentenced them to three-year imprisonment and imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh each on the convicts.
In 2007, the apex court stayed the conviction of Sidhu and Sandhu in the case, paving the way for him to contest the by-poll for the Amritsar Lok Sabha seat.
As per the prosecution case, Sidhu and Sandhu were allegedly present in a Gypsy parked near Sheranwala Gate Crossing on December 27, 1988, when Gurnam Singh, Jaswinder Singh and one other were going to a bank to withdraw money for a marriage function.
As they reached Sheranwala Gate Crossing, Gurnam Singh driving a Maruti car found a Gypsy in between the road and asked the occupant Sidhu and Sandhu to remove the vehicle for their passage following which the heated exchange took place.
Singh was beaten up by Sidhu and later fled the crime scene. The injured was taken to a hospital, where he was declared dead.
(With inputs from agencies)