A local court has framed charges against suspended SP (Vigilance) Amandeep Kaur and four others in the case of suicide of Excise and Taxation Officer Ranjit Singh, who ended his life in April 2011 after he was falsely implicated in a bribery case by the Punjab Vigilance Bureau.
Additional Sessions Judge P P Singh on Wednesday charged them with abetment to suicide, criminal conspiracy, framing incorrect records, and various other offences under the Indian Penal Code and the Prevention of Corruption Act. Besides the SP, the accused are her reader Head Constable Harminder Singh, trader Rajinder Singh Gopi, and Gopi’s friends Rajiv Sood and Paramjit Singh.
ETO Ranjit Singh was booked by the Vigilance Bureau in March 2011, allegedly after he was caught taking money from Gopi for releasing his truck which had been impounded. It was said that the trap was set after Gopi lodged a complaint with the Vigilance Bureau.
Ranjit was arrested. Days after he was granted bail, he committed suicide by consuming poison at his phase 2 residence. His wife Manjit Kaur complained to the state government, stating that her husband had been framed in a false case and that this drove him to end his life. The government then ordered an inquiry by IGP H S Sidhu and Deputy Excise and Taxation Officer Mansvi Kumar.
The committee held that the ETO was falsely implicated in a bogus trap, “so as to nail down official acts of ETO Ranjit Singh to nab the tax evaders”. On the basis of this inquiry report, the SP and others were booked by the Vigilance Bureau for abetment to suicide, corruption and various other charges in August 2012. The police also moved a cancellation
report in the charges against the ETO, which the court accepted in September last year.
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The court ruled that the ETO was to recover an amount of Rs 2.27 lakh as fine/cash security from complainant Gopi for the release of his goods, but he was booked in a false trap.