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Celebrations in Amritsar 

Amritsar: Local Bodies Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu’s family and supporters celebrated his acquittal by the apex court in the road rage case, at their residence in Amritsar on Tuesday. His wife Dr Navjot Kaur Sidhu said their long-standing claim got vindicated after the Supreme Court held him guilty only of causing hurt and let him off with a fine of Rs 1,000. She said the lower court had already acquitted Sidhu in the case. However, due to politics and his celebrity status, he was again implicated, she said.She alleged that former Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal had been attempting to ensnare Sidhu in the case. Sidhu’s daughter Rabia, who is pursuing fashion designing in London, said, “I went to a gurdwara and a temple to seek blessings of the Almighty today (Tuesday).”She thanked the judiciary for the verdict. She said it was all due to the blessings of people.

Case chronology

  • December 27, 1988: Sidhu and friend Rupinder Singh Sandhu allegedly park their Maruti Gypsy in the middle of the road near the Sheranwala Gate crossing in Patiala. A local resident, Gurnam Singh (65), asks them to move their vehicle. Sidhu allegedly beats him up and takes away his car keys. An FIR is lodged against Sidhu and Sandhu after Gurnam Singh dies of a heart attack.
  • July 14, 1989: The Patiala police file chargesheet under Section 304 IPC only against Sandhu.
  • July 22: A separate complaint of murder is filed against Sidhu and Sandhu.
  • Sept 25, 1990: A trial court frames charges of culpable homicide not amounting to murder against Sandhu.
  • August 30, 1993: The sessions court exercises its power under Section 319 CrPC (adding additional accused) and summons Sidhu to stand trial.
  • Sept 22, 1999: The trial court acquits Sidhu of murder charges.
  • December 1, 2006: The Punjab and Haryana High Court reverses the trial court verdict and convicts Sidhu and Sandhu of culpable homicide not amounting to murder and sentences them to three-year jail with a fine of Rs 1 lakh each.
  • January 23, 2007: The SC stays the conviction.
  • April 12, 2018: In SC, the Congress government favours the HC order of sentencing Sidhu to three-year imprisonment.
  • April 18: The SC reserves verdict on appeals of Sidhu and Sandhu against the High Court verdict.
  • May 15: The SC spares Sidhu from jail term, convicts him for the offence of voluntarily causing hurt and imposes a fine of Rs 1,000.

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