New Delhi: The Supreme Court has awarded cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu one-year jail in a 1988 road rage case.
A bench of Justices A M Khanwilkar and S K Kaul allowed the plea filed by the kin of Gurnam Singh, who lost his life in the incident, seeking review of the top court's 2018 order by which it had let him off with just a fine of Rs 1000.
The cricketer-turned-politician must surrender and serve a year's "rigorous imprisonment", the court said.
It is likely that the former cricketer will surrender before the Patiala police today, May 20, after which he will be taken to jail.
On December 27, 1988, Mr Sidhu got into an argument with Gurnam Singh, a resident of Patiala, over a parking spot. Mr Sidhu and his friend, Rupinder Singh Sandhu, allegedly dragged Gurnam Singh out of his car and hit him. He later died in hospital.
In 1999, a sessions court in Patiala acquitted Mr Sidhu citing lack of evidence and giving him the benefit of the doubt.
On a petition challenging this verdict, the Punjab and Haryana High court convicted Mr Sidhu in 2006 of culpable homicide and sentenced him to three years in jail.
In 2018, Mr Sidhu approached the Supreme Court, which said the case was over 30 years old and Mr Sidhu had not used a weapon. Mr Sidhu was only held guilty of assaulting a senior citizen, spared a jail term and fined ₹ 1,000.
The Supreme Court also acquitted Mr Sidhu's friend of all charges saying there was no proper evidence he was present at the spot.
The family of the victim, Gurnam Singh, requested the Supreme Court to review its order and consider tougher charges. Mr Sidhu challenged the family's petition and has ended up with a jail sentence.
For over three decades, the case has dogged Mr Sidhu, who recently quit as Punjab Congress chief after his party's defeat in state elections.