London: An Indian-origin father has died in the UK awaiting justice for his son for over 17 years who was stabbed to death in one of Scotland's most high profile murder cases, a media report said.
Darshan Singh Chhokar, 76, hailed as a warrior, proud father and fighter for justice for his long campaign following his son Surjit Singh Chhokar's murder, mounted a long campaign. No one, however, has been brought to justice so far. Surjit, 32, who worked as a waiter, was stabbed to death in November 1998 on the streets of Overtown, North Lanarks, after a row over a benefit giro cheque, the Daily Record reported.
Ronnie Coulter, who denies killing Surjit, will stand trial next year in connection with the murder. Aamer Anwar, the family lawyer yesterday Tweeted that Darshan had died.
"Sadly Darshan Singh Chhokar - warrior, proud father, fighter for justice - passed away last night. His legacy will live on," Anwar tweeted.
Darshan was suffering from terminal bowel cancer that has now spread to other parts of his body, reports said. Prosecutors claim that Coulter was acting with two other men, Andrew Coulter and David Montgomery, at the time of the alleged attack on Surjit.
The murder charge includes allegations that Surjit was punched and prevented from defending himself. He is then said to have been hit with a wooden baton before Coulter repeatedly struck him with a knife and killed him. It is further alleged that Coulter did previously 'envince malice and ill-will' towards Surjit. Coulter is also accused of attempting to defeat the ends of justice which include claims he got another person to hide clothes worn during the alleged murder along with a case of knives.
Coulter is further accused of later attempting to pervert the course of justice with 'intent to avoid detection, arrest, prosecution and conviction.' He also faces earlier claims that on the day of the alleged murder, he forged the signature of Surjit to help cash a 100 pounds giro cheque. He is then accused of joining Andrew Coulter to break into Surjit's home in Wishaw and steal a cooker.