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Delhi CM defends parole for Manu Sharma

November 09, 2009 15:29 IST

Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, who is under attack for recommending parole to Manu Sharma, who is serving life imprisonment in the Jessica Lall murder case, on Monday said the move was within the 'legal purview'.

"Whatever has been done is within the legal purview. It (recommending parole) has been done after taking suggestions from everybody (concerned agencies)," Dikshit said when asked on what basis Sharma was granted parole.

Asking the media not to hype the issue, she said, "My submission to you is that parole is something that every prisoner wants. There is nothing illegal that he asks for neither is there anything unusual about it."

Sharma is serving a life sentence at Tihar jail for killing model Jessica Lall by shooting at her at point blank range on the night of April 29, 1999, at the Tamarind Court Bar owned by socialite Bina Ramani.

The request for a two-month parole, which ends on November 22, had come from Sharma's family, citing his mother's illness, a senior official in the Delhi Home Department said.

"The request was forwarded to Lieutenant Governor Tejendra Khanna after taking into consideration police reports and jail officials' recommendations," he said.

Dikshit said she recommended Manu's parole, on the basis of reports from jail and police authorities, certifying that "yes, this person can avail parole because his behaviour has been good."

Dikshit strongly refuted allegations that her government was under pressure to grant bail as Manu was the son of a leading Congress politician from Haryana.

"It was (recommending parole) not because there was a pressure on the government. It is not given on our whims and fancies, but done with a reason. He has not taken a parole before. It is his right," Dikshit said, adding, "We will not favour anybody".

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