Two former Chandigarh police officers have turned approvers against former Punjab director general of police (DGP) Sumedh Singh Saini in connection with the 29-year-old abduction case of Balwant Singh Multani.
They claimed that they saw Multani in great pain at a police station in Chandigarh shortly after he was picked up from his home in Mohali on December 13, 1991. A couple of days later, Saini told them that he had died, and made plans to dispose of his body.
The court accepted the request of both the officers. Kuldeep Singh Sandhu and Jagir Singh, who both retired as Inspectors from Chandigarh Police, recorded their statements under Section 364 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) on August 14 in the court of Judicial Magistrate (Ist class) Joshica Sood.
Jagir Singh said in his statement that on August 29, 1991, a bomb blast had occurred in the car of Saini when the latter was posted as the Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP), Chandigarh. Jagir Singh stated that three persons were killed in the blast and a number of others were injured.
According to Jagir Singh, a search operation was carried out to find the culprits and on December 13, Balwant Singh Multani was rounded up and taken to Sector 17 police station in Chandigarh.
At that time, Jagir Singh was posted as sub inspector in-charge of police post, Sector 22. He stated that he visited the Sector 17 police station in the late hours on December 13. SSP Saini was sitting in a chair.
Inspector KIP Singh, DSP Baldev Singh Saini, Inspector Prem Malik and Sub-Inspector Satbir Singh were there. All of them were interrogating Multani.
Jagir Singh stated that he again visited the Sector 17 police station on December 14 and saw that Multani was lying in pain.
According to Jagir Singh’s statement, he was again called to the police station twice and Saini informed him that Multani had died.
“I was further told that Inspector Prem Malik, DSP Baldev Singh Saini and SI Satbir Singh were put on the job to dispose of Multani’s body. I was asked to complete the file by hook or by crook,” Jagir Singh said in his statement.
He also said in the complaint that he was later sent to Quadian police station in Batala district where an FIR was registered against Multani and he was shown as an absconder.
Another retired police officer from Chandigarh, Kuldeep Singh, claimed that he saw Multani was not able to walk properly and blood was oozing out of his anus.
“On December 18, a team was prepared by Sumedh Singh Saini and the dead body of Balwant Singh Multani was disposed of secretly,” Kuldeep Singh said in his statement.
After hearing the arguments of the prosecution, the court of Judicial Magistrate (Ist class) Joshica Sood pronounced the orders that pardon was granted to accused Kuldeep Singh and Jagir Singh.
It would be sufficient to help the investigating agency to collect the evidence against the main accused regarding the illegal abduction of Balwant Singh Multani, his illegal detention, custodial torture leading to his death and disposal of his dead body.
“Pardon is granted only to accused Jagir Singh and Kuldeep Singh, subject to the condition that they will disclose the true and correct facts relating to the case to the court while deposing as prosecution witnesses and is declined with regard to accused Harsahai Sharma,” the court ordered.
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