Navneet Kaur, wife of Sikh militant Davinderpal Singh Bhullar, on Monday thanked the almighty for the Supreme Court decision to convert Bhullar's death sentence to life imprisonment.
When asked if she thought the political pressure mounted by different groups helped her save Bhullar's life, she said, "People from all communities prayed for his life. I thank god and the people."
Talking to HT over phone from Delhi, she said, "We got support from every section of society. I have no words to thank them."
Navneet lived with her husband for only three months as Bhullar disappeared soon after marriage; she is now a Canadian citizen.
She said, "Last year, when the Supreme Court refused the mercy plea, I felt helpless. But surprisingly, our decision to make the delay in deciding the mercy petition a ground for commuting the death sentence helped many others who had been facing a similar trauma."
She advocated judicial reforms. "The cases are kept pending for years. Judicial decisions should be taken in a time-bound manner. Either you commute the sentence or execute it. The decision should be taken in appropriate time. To keep the decision pending for long is unfair to the convict."
She said, "My husband faced it and now has mental problems. He could not understand why he got the death sentence despite the split judgment. He was further made to face suspense over his execution. It kills you and your family every day."
She said, "Justice is quick in Canada. There is need for reform in the judicial system so that people get speedy justice."
She said her next mission is to take Bhullar home. Bhullar had already spent the time a life-term prisoner spent in jail, she said.
However, there have been many Sikh militants who have completed their sentence but have not been freed, so Navneet is expecting this. "We are yet to go through the legalities. We will see what we can do to free him," said Navneet, who worked as a teacher in a private school in Bathinda before leaving for Canada and starting the legal fight for her husband.