DELHI: The sole convict to be awarded the death sentence in a recent 1984 Sikh genocide case judgement has sought bail and suspension of his death sentence from the Delhi High Court. The court has adjourned the petition by Yashpal Singh (pictured below) to 29 January 2019.

The Delhi Patiala House Court had earlier this year pronounced the death sentence for convict Yashpal Singh and life imprisonment for another convict Naresh Sherawat. The sentences followed their convictions on November 15 for killing two young Sikhs in Delhi’s Mahipalpur area during the 1984 Sikh genocide.

The two convicts, were held guilty of killing Hardev Singh and Avtar Singh in a complaint led by Hardev Singh’s brother, Santokh Singh. The Delhi Police had closed the case in 1994 for lack of evidence however, it was reopened and investigated by a Special Investigation Team (SIT).

Whilst this was the first death penalty after the SIT was formed, one Kishori Lal (pictured below) known infamously at “the butcher of Trilokpuri” was earlier sentenced to death by a trial court in as many as seven anti-Sikh genocide cases.

However, the high court confirmed death penalty only in three cases, which were later commuted to life term by the apex court.

As per the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), the death penalty cannot be executed unless confirmed by the high court. The convicts have also been awarded varying jail terms and fines for offences including attempt to murder, dacoity and attacking victims by dangerous weapons.

The court spared convict Naresh Sherawat (pictured below) the gallows while taking note of his alleged medical condition and his lawyer’s arguments seeking leniency in the quantum of sentence.