Delhi HC upholds life term for 1993 plane hijacker

The Delhi High Court on Tuesday upheld the life sentence awarded to a political activist Hari Singh for hijacking an Indian Airlines flight in March 1993.

Last Updated: Mar 29, 2011, 20:47 PM IST

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Tuesday
upheld the life sentence awarded to a political activist Hari
Singh for hijacking an Indian Airlines flight in March 1993
but asked the government to suitably commute his sentence as
he had committed the crime "to make a political point."

A bench headed by Justice S Ravinder Bhat upheld the
life sentence awarded to Singh by a Delhi trial court in
August 2001 saying "this court finds no infirmity with the
approach or the findings of the trial court. The conviction of
the appellant (Hari Singh) has to be sustained."

Singh, who has been on bail since July 18, 2003, was
given time till April 20 to surrender before the appropriate
trial court.

While upholding Singh`s conviction, the court,
however, recommended to the government to consider commuting
his sentence appropriately as the convict, also a former
school teacher, had taken the step to vent his frustration
over the falling norms and values in the society.

"It would be appropriate for the government to
consider the issue of suitably commuting or reviewing the
appellant`s sentence in exercise of its constitutional power,"
the bench, which also included Justice G P Mittal, said.

It said "the appellant was a misguided individual and
perhaps wished to make a statement or a political point but
such a conduct is impermissible and not in public interest as
it amounts to an individual jeopardising the life and safety
of several passengers and also disrupting vital services."

PTI