Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Death Row...

Professor Davinderpal Singh Bhullar, a graduate in electrical engineering from Guru Nanak Engineering College, Ludhiana, served as professor in different technical colleges of Punjab. Like many Sikh youth facing harassment from the Punjab Police, he had managed to escape to Germany in December, 1994, when his father disappeared while in the police custody.

Charges against Bhai Davinder Singh Bhullar were framed by Indian Authorities under the controvercial and now defunct TADA laws of the 1980s and 1990s for an alleged attack on Youth Congress leader Maninder Bitta on September 11, 1993. Germany broke European law by deporting Professor Bhullar to India, as it illegal to deport someone to a country that practices the death penalty.

Professor Bhullar was sentenced to death in 2001 based on a "confession" that was forced upon him using torture, which Amnesty International has flagged up. Furthermore, none of the 133 witnesses produced by the prosecution, while the case was in the lower court, identified Professor Bhullar. For the first time in India’s Supreme Court’s history, someone was sentenced to death on the basis of a split judgment. The presiding judge, Justice Shah acquitted the accused whereas the other two judges, Justice Aggarwal and Justice Passayat upheld the death sentence.

For 16 years he has been kept in solitary confinement, spending 22 hours in a 9x7 cell. The Professor’s mental health has deteriorated and it has become life threatening. Justice Shah acquitted Professor Bhullar stating that the conspiracy theory falls flat as the “rest of the accused who are named in the confessional statement are not convicted or tried.”

Despite appeals for a life sentence instead of capital punishment, the President of India recently announced that the death penalty will be delivered to Professor Bhullar.

Urgent request, please visit to see how you can help Professor Bhullar.

India is advertising for an executioner for the first executions for those on death row in 7 years - Amnesty International UK describe this as a huge "step back for human rights".

Perhaps what is most disturbing is that both people who are due to be killed, have huge support for their innocence and their is massive doubt over the Indian Government's reasons and evidence.

Read: Amnesty International Article

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