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25th acquittal in a row: Bhai Daljit Singh Bittu acquitted in Ropar case

January 6, 2012 | By

Ropar, Punjab (January 05, 2011): Bhai Daljit Singh, chairman of Akali Dal Panch Pardhani was acquitted today from false charges under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 by a trial court of Ropar, Punjab.

This case was initially framed against Mahinder Singh Chairian, Baljeet Singh Bhau, Buta Singh and Mohinder Singh under FIR 165, dated 15 November, 2009 at Sadar Police Station, Ropar Punjab. The case was registered under section 16, 17, 18 and 18B of UA(P)A, Sections 4 and 5 of Explosive Act and Section 25 of Arms Act. Bhai Daljit Singh was framed in this case at a later stage.

The court also acquitted all other persons charged in this case from all charges, except Mahinder Singh Chairian who is convicted under section 25 of the Arms Act, and is sentenced to undergo 3 years imprisonment. MS Chairian was also acquitted from charges under UA(P)A and Explosives Act.

Throughout the trial the prosecution was not able to produce even an iota of evidence against Bhai Daljit Singh in support of allegations of  “unlawful activities” levelled against him.

It is notable that Bhai Daljit Singh was charged in this case for incurring travelling expenditure of Sikh Sangat to attend a socio-religious function.

“There was no evidence or witness to support the prosecution’s allegations against Bhai Daljit Singh, therefore the court acquitted him” informed Advocate Sarabjeet Singh Bhangu, the counsel of Bhai Daljit Singh. “The whole case was based on baseless imaginary stories, having no factual or legal relevance and was liable to be dismissed” he added.

Advocate Bhangu further told Sikh Siyasat that during the trial the prosecution had once told the court to close the case against Bhai Daljit Singh as it had nothing to produce against him. But that day Bhai Daljit Singh was not produced in the court by Jail authorities and Punjab police, therefore in his absence the prayer of prosecution was not entertained. Later the prosecution, apparently under political pressure, refused to withdraw the case.   He said that the court accepted supplementary chargesheet charging Bhai Daljit Singh in the absence of prima facie evidence.

“Though Bhai Daljit Singh is acquitted today, but taking into account the facts and circumstances of the case and the fact two years long custody during trial, I could say that in this case – the process has amounted to punishment” said Advocate SS Bhangu.

Bhai Daljit Singh has been acquitted in four cases, including three charges of Sedition, since his arrest in August 2009 but he is still confined in Central Jail of Amritsar, Punjab due to another false charge that is pending against him in Mansa Court.

Since he was first arrested in 1995, Bhai Daljit Singh has spent 12 years in prison without conviction. He was charged in 28 cases, of which he is acquitted in 25 cases while 3 are still pending. Most of the cases were of political nature and he is targeted due to his dissenting political ideology and activism.

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