Punjab’s ruling party, the Shiromani Akali Dal, has reacted sharply to the reported recommendations of the Delhi government to pardon Kishori Lal, who was convicted for the murder of seven Sikhs during the November 1984 massacre that followed the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.

A party release, quoting its spokesman Daljeet Singh Cheema, said the move had once again hurt the sentiments of Sikhs.

Kishori Lal was awarded the death sentence thrice by trial courts and each time it was converted to life imprisonment by the Supreme Court.

Previously, the Sheila Dikshit government had condoned his life imprisonment in one case, but he could not be released because of the other two punishments.

But this time, the Congress government in Delhi went a step further and recommended his release after condoning life imprisonment in the other two cases as well.

“Nexus exposed”

“With this shameless decision of the Congress government of Delhi, the cat is out of the bag now. This has once again exposed the cruel nexus between the perpetrators of such a heinous crime and the Congress party,” Dr. Cheema said. It was ironical that the Congress, instead of pursuing the remaining cases to ensure punishment to the guilty of the 1984 Sikh massacre, was working to release even those who had been convicted by the courts, he said.

Dr. Cheema said that this action had sent shock waves across the whole nation and all right-thinking people failed to understand the logic behind the Delhi Chief Minister’s decision.

The Akali Dal urged the Lt. Governor of Delhi to immediately reject the recommendations of the Sheila Dikshit government and ensure that the guilty underwent punishment till the last day of his term, as ordered by the Supreme Court.