On Republic Day, the state government failed to grant remission to Navjot Singh Sidhu, after two days of high drama.
After two days of hectic politics during which the government was tight-lipped about sentence remission for any high-profile convicts, Sidhu’s family and supporters were ready to welcome him.
The Punjab Government’s effigy was to be burnt, but the idea was dropped. As well as Sidhu, many others scheduled for special reprieves have been kept in prison,” said staunch Sidhu loyalist Mansimrat Singh Riar.
The Patiala Central Jail had been expected to release Sidhu on Thursday. On Wednesday evening, even his exercise equipment was removed from the jail. Last May, Sidhu surrendered in court after being convicted in a 1988 road rage case.
Sidhu was expected to be one of 50 prisoners given special remission on Republic Day. Posters and banners were put up at Sidhu’s house in Yadavindra Enclave by his supporters.
Earlier on Wednesday, HPS Verma, who represented Sidhu in court, told The Tribune that Sidhu should meet you all outside jail tomorrow.
Sidhu’s release is unknown, however, according to Patiala Central Jail Superintendent Manjit Singh Tiwana. “I can’t comment until I receive the orders.” “We have moved his equipment outside jail to make room inside in case the government issues last-minute orders,” Tiwana said.
Following Sidhu’s non-release, several Congress leaders retaliated against the AAP government on Thursday evening. Former Punjab Congress chief Shamsher Singh Dullo, former MP Mohinder Singh Kaypee, and former MLAs Ashwani Sekhri, Navtej Singh Cheema, and Rajinder Singh protested at Sidhu’s house in Patiala.
The states grant special remissions to certain prisoners with good behavior on January 26 and August 15.
Over two dozen hoardings and banners put up by Sidhu’s supporters were removed by the Municipal Corporation (MC), Patiala, which is usually slow to take action against illegal political signs.