A local court,on Thursday,referred the case of contempt of court proceedings against Patiala Jail superintendent Lakhwinder Singh Jakhar to the Punjab and Haryana High Court .
On Wednesday,the Court of Additional District and Sessions Judge Shalini Singh Nagpal had heard Jakhar through his counsel AS Grewal,Additional Advocate General(Punjab),and was to pronounce the order today. However,today,the matter to the High Court under Section 15(2) of the Contempt of Court Act. In an 11 Page order,the Court referred the matter of Jakhar tendering an unconditional apology to the High Court which will examine the matter.
In the previous hearing,Grewal told the Court that his client was acting under the mandate of the Supreme Court of India . He also cited the Apex Court’s judgments in the Harbans Singh versus the State of Uttar Pradesh and Madhu versus the State of Kerala,where the Court had extended the benefit to all the accused,even the non-appealing ones.
He had also submitted that under Section 772 of the manual for the Superintendent and management of prisons in Punjab,1996,a jail superintendent could return the warrant.
The Court had issued contempt notice to Jakhar for returning the death warrants of Balwant Singh Rajoana on March 27. The Court had at that time said that Jakhar had on two occasions refused to execute the warrants of sentence of death by way of written communication on March 19 and March 24.
Death sentence was awarded to Rajoana by a CBI special court in July 2007 in the case. However,the Centre had stayed the hanging on March 28,2012.