P K Jaiswar, Tribune News Service
Amritsar, October 2. Simon Hughes, Deputy Leader of Liberal Democratic Parliamentary Party in the House of Commons, Britain, today said he would take up the issue of clemency to Devinder Pal Singh Bhullar with the United Nation Human Rights Commission and the International Commission of Jurists.
Bhullar is facing death sentence in India in connection with a bomb blast in 1993 leading to the death of several persons. Various Sikh organisations have been demanding converting his death into life imprisonment.
Talking to mediapersons here, the British Member of Parliament pointed out that he would raise the issue within this week as it was the immediate issue concerning the Sikh community.
“I will also take up the issue with ministers and members of the British Government and convince them to consider to raise the issue with the Indian Government during the Commonwealth meet slated to be held in Perth this month-end,” said Hughes. He was here to pay obeisance at Golden Temple and also to talk with several organisations to gather more information about Bhullar’s case. “As the issue has also been highlighted in England by several Sikh federations and as I am a human rights lawyer and member of the International Commission of Jurists, I thought it appropriate to have more information about the case,” he said.
Hughes has arrived in India to interact with Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government-in-exile.
Answering media queries over the death penalty awarded to Bhullar, he said, “I personally oppose death penalty and it should be banned all over the world. Some other ways of severe punishment should be devised. There are instances in various parts of the world wherein persons were found innocent after awarding death penalty. There should be standard norms all over the world over death penalty.”
Hughes was accompanied by Dr Juias, senior lecturer in international relations, Paramjit Singh of the Sikh Students Federation and Mandhir Singh of the Shiromani Akali Dal (Panch Pardhani).