SC rejects plea seeking clemency for Rajoana



SC rejects plea seeking clemency for Rajoana Zeenews Bureau

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday refused to entertain a plea seeking clemency for Balwant Singh Rajoana, convicted for assassinating Punjab’s former chief minister Beant Singh.

The petition was moved by an NGO seeking a stay on Rajoana’s proposed execution on March 31.

Rajoana has himself neither challenged his conviction nor filed any mercy petition although Beant Singh’s relatives had forgiven him.

He had earlier asked the Akalis in a letter not to save him and claimed that they were pushing for a pardon out of fear of losing support in Punjab.

Chief Minister Beant Singh was assassinated by a human bomb, Dilawar Singh, just outside the Punjab secretariat on August 31, 1995. Rajoana was to serve as a back-up bomb in case Dilawar failed.

Rajoana and Jagtar Singh Hawara, the alleged mastermind, were awarded the death sentence. Hawara’s death sentence was commuted to life by Punjab and Haryana High Court. The appeal of another co-accused, Lakhwinder Singh, is pending before the Supreme Court.