Get Beant killer freed: Akal Takht to CM
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Get Beant killer freed: Akal Takht to CM

The Akal Takht has issued a 'hukamnama' (edict) to Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar and Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal to take up the Balwant Singh Rajoana execution case with President Pratibha Patil.

punjab Updated: Mar 25, 2012 02:36 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times

A day after the Akal Takht issued a religious edict asking Parkash Singh Badal to meet the President and Prime Minister to avert the March 31 hanging of Balwant Singh Rajoana, the Punjab chief minister said he would make every possible legal effort to resolve the issue.

“Unha da hukamnama sir matthe… (We respect their edict) but as the government, we have our duties,” said Badal. “If need be, the government will do that (go to the President to seek unconditional mercy for Rajoana)”.

Rajoana, a Babbar Khalsa International terrorist, is accused of assassinating former chief minister Beant Singh in a car bomb blast on August 31, 1995, outside the Punjab civil secretariat.

Apart from Badal, the highest Sikh body had also directed the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) president Avtar Singh Makkar to meet the prime minister to save Rajoana.

On Saturday, Badal said the government’s priority is communal harmony in Punjab.

The CM was in Patiala to inaugurate a cancer treatment centre at the Government Rajindra Medical College and Hospital.

He said the decision would be taken on Sunday, when it has all the legal opinion and views of the other departments concerned. From Day One, the government had been observing the case from every angle, Badal claimed. “Now even the family of former chief minister Beant Singh has stated that it will not object to Rajoana getting mercy.”

On Friday, Beant Singh’s grandson Gurkirat Singh, a Congress MLA from Khanna, had also said he would have no objection if Rajoana was accorded mercy.

“All I am concerned about is peace in Punjab, he told HT.

The chief minister ducked queries about the Akal Takht declaring Dilabar Singh, the human bomber in the Beant Singh assassination case, “a quami shaheed (martyr of the faith)”. “This query you can take to Sri Akal Takht.”

First Published: Mar 23, 2012 19:55 IST