Bathinda district has properties, worth over Rs 19 crore, belonging to Dera Sacha Sauda, and the quantum of loss due to violence after the verdict against Dera chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim is estimated to be Rs 23 lakh. Following the Punjab and Haryana High Court order in which Punjab and Haryana have been asked to submit details of DSS properties, Punjab has compiled details pegging Dera properties to at least Rs 52 crore.
The reports are to be submitted on Tuesday. The High Court has ordered the attachment of Dera properties to pay compensation for the loss of public and private properties caused by the Dera followers, who went on the rampage to lodge their protest against the conviction. Dera has a huge following in districts located in the Malwa region. Bathinda has one of the biggest Deras of the sect in Salabatpura.
Till the filing of this report, the Punjab home department was in the process of compiling details. While a majority of the 22 districts had sent the details, a Punjab government official said details were awaited from the least affected districts like Amritsar and Hoshiarpur. “We have to submit report post-afternoon tomorrow. We are compiling the details and by tomorrow afternoon, we hope to get more details. Deputy commissioners of a few districts have sought time to provide details,” said the functionary.
The tentative figures of the loss reported from more than half the districts is estimated to be Rs 1.25 crore, including public and private property. In Muktsar district, another district in the Malwa region, a loss of Rs 10 lakh worth public property and Rs 13 lakh of private property has been calculated. Incidentally, Dera has properties worth Rs 5 crore in Muktsar district alone.
Tentative figures for making police and non-police arrangements to maintain law and order in Punjab are around Rs 1.77 crore.
The government official said Punjab may seek time to submit the full report and is likely to submit details that would be received by Tuesday.