Manu Sharma, who shot dead Jessica Lal, released

Manu Sharma shot dead Jessica in April 1999, was given life imprisonment in 2006

manu sharma ani (File) Manu Sharma | ANI

Manu Sharma, who was sentenced to life imprisonment for killing model Jessica Lal in April 1999, was released on Monday from Tihar jail on the grounds of good behaviour.

Manu Sharma is the son of Venod Sharma, a former Congress MP. Manu Sharma shot Jessica Lal dead when she allegedly refused to serve him more drinks at the bar she was working at in Delhi. The Jessica Lal case had made headlines following allegations of abuse of power and attempts to save the accused. Manu Sharma was acquitted by a trial court in February 2006. But following public pressure, the Delhi High Court conducted a fast-track trial. The trial court's judgment was overturned and Manu Sharma was convicted in December 2006. He was sentenced to life imprisonment.

On May 12, the Delhi Sentence Review Board (SRB) recommended premature release of Manu Sharma. The recommendation was made at a meeting of the SRB chaired by Delhi Home Minister Satyendar Jain. This was the sixth time that Manu Sharma's appeal for premature release had gone before the board.

"Manu Sharma fulfils all parameters as required for premature release," his lawyer, Amit Sahni, said.

Manu Sharma’s release came after Delhi L-G Anil Baijal had accepted the board’s recommendations.

After the board had made public its decision, Sabrina Lal, the sister of Jessica Lal, announced she had forgiven Manu Sharma. Sabrina had led protests against Manu Sharma’s acquittal.

The Hindustan Times reported Manu Sharma had started an NGO inside Tihar, which helped his case for release. "He runs a non-government organisation, Siddhartha Vashishta Charitable Trust, that started working in Tihar around eight years ago, and has funded the education of the children of prison inmates," the Hindustan Times reported.