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Khalistan militant Bhullar to be first person to hang in several years

Khalistan Liberation Force (KLF) militant Devinder Singh Bhullar, sentenced to death sentence by the Supreme Court is all set to become the first person to be executed in India in several years.

His mercy petition has been turned down by the President of India, the first such refusal since 2004.

Bhullar was convicted of attacking the former Indian Youth Congress(IYC) chief MS Bitta in New Delhi on September 11,1993 and former Chandigarh SSP, Mr Sumedh Singh Saini, in 1991. Though Bitta was not killed, the attempt resulted in the deaths of others.

He was convicted in the a now abolished TADA Court, based on his confession to the police. Such confessions are no longer counted as evidence. A three-Judge bench of the Supreme Court, however, upheld the death penalty for Bhullar later.

KLF used to be a major terror force in Punjab during the 1980s, when the state was under the sway of separatist militants.

Bitta had, in between, alleged that efforts were being made to get the death penalty of Bhullar converted into life imprisonment by vested interests from Punjab. He had also attacked statements by Kapil Sibal that the government had no issues with granting him life imprisonment instead of death.

Another convicted murderer, Mahendra Nath Das of Assam was also sent on his way to the gallows by President Pratibha Patil on the advice of the Home ministry. The President always goes by the recommendations of the ministry in such cases.

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