The man behind the list: Jaspal Singh Manjhpur

He was accused in Ludhiana’s Shingar cinema blast and another case, and was in jail for two years from 2009 to 2011.

Written by Kanchan Vasdev | Chandigarh | Published:July 23, 2015 2:28 am
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The 35-year-old Ludhiana lawyer and former aide of Sikh Students’ Federation chief Bhai Daljeet Singh Bittu, brought out a compendium of Sikh prisoners, with details of cases registered against them, in 2004. His list of 82 — revised to 64 on Tuesday — originally had 120 names.

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He was accused in Ludhiana’s Shingar cinema blast and another case, and was in jail for two years from 2009 to 2011, but was acquitted. “My resolve to help Sikh prisoners got stronger after my stay in jail,” he says. “I have been preparing the list after getting in touch with prisoners, who update my list periodically.”

His argument for premature release is based on the principle that punishment must be geared towards reforming the prisoner: “If a person is behaving well in the jail, wants to return to the mainstream, why should he not be allowed to come out? If he has to die in jail, how are we going to reform him?”

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