Prof. Davinderpal Singh Bhullar was today granted bail in the Batala case by the designated TADA court here, clearing the way for his parole. Bhullar, who spent 23 years in jail, is now admitted to the psychiatry ward of the local Government Medical College. He is reportedly suffering from schizophrenia.
His wife Navneet Kaur, who attended the court hearing, said they would apply for parole on furnishing the bail bond. “Our struggle for the past over two decades has finally borne fruit,” she said. Bhullar had been exempted from personal appearance in the court.
Bhullar’s counsel Jaspal Singh Manjhpur said the prosecutors argued that the Batala case was serious as it was related to terrorism. Therefore, Bhullar should not be granted bail. But Bhullar’s counsel, including Manjhpur, Sanjiv Arora and Navjeet Singh, pointed out that the incident had occurred 24 years ago and that the police had presented the challan 21 years later. Also, neither was there any eyewitness in the case, nor had the police made any recovery. Citing Bhullar’s poor health, the counsel pleaded that he be granted bail.
The TADA court, fixing March 19 for the next hearing, ordered that Bhullar be released on bail after furnishing a bail bond of Rs 50,000.
In June 2015, Bhullar was shifted from the Tihar Jail in Delhi to the Amritsar Central Jail. Soon after, he was admitted to the psychiatry ward of the Government Medical College, Amritsar.
The Batala case pertains to the killing of two “terrorists” by the Batala police in 1992. A case under Sections 307 and 34 of the IPC, Sections 25, 54, 59 of the Arms Act, Sections 3, 4, 5 of TADA and Sections 4, 5 of the Explosives Act was registered at the Batala Sadar police station in 1992. But Bhullar was named in the case in 1995.
The Batala police filed the challan in the case on February 10 this year after 21 years. On February 26, Bhullar appeared before the TADA court that sent him to judicial remand.