The special CBI Court of Chandigarh Wednesday sentenced four year imprisonment to the former Chandigarh Police Sub Inspector (SI), and three year imprisonment to his accomplice, who were held guilty of accepting a bribe of Rs 25,000 from an accused in an assault case in 2012.
The convicts, SI Kulwaranjit Singh Cheema and Subhash Chand Dhiman, have been held guilty under Section 120 b (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code read with Section 7,13 (2) read with Section 13 (1) (d) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, by the Court of Additional District and Sessions Judge, Dr Sushil Kumar Garg.
On Wednesday, while pleading leniency in the punishment, convict Cheema pleaded that he is first offender. He had unblemished record of service before registration of present case. He has three daughters and a wife and was the sole bread earner of the family, while Dhiman pleaded that he is not having any criminal antecedents nor involved in any other criminal case. He is not a previous convict and suffering from BP and Sugar.
The CBI Public Prosecutor, Kanwar Pal Singh, however argued that in order to check rampant corruption in public life, it is need of the hour to give exemplary punishment to the public servant, who is found indulged in corrupt practices. Taking lenient view in such like matters sends a very wrong message to the undesirable elements in the society, therefore stringent and deterrent punishment may be imposed upon the convicts, the prosecutor argued.
The court, after hearing the arguments, sentenced four year imprisonment to Cheema and three year imprisonment to Dhiman. The court also imposed a fine of Rs 75,000 on Cheema, and Rs 25,000 on Dhiman.
Dhiman, however, was granted bail after he deposited the fine, as he was sentenced three years imprisonment, while Cheema was taken into custody.
As per CBI, the matter dates back to September 26, 2012, when the accused were arrested on the complaint of Manpreet Singh, a resident of Indira Colony at Manimajra. On the night of September 22, 2012, the complainant’s brother, Harbans Singh, had allegedly attacked his landlord with a knife following a quarrel over distribution of water. The landlord had thus filed a complaint at the Manimajra police station and two days later, Harbans was summoned to the police station at Manimajra. The complainant, Manpreet stated to CBI that at the police station, Kulwaranjit, who was investigating the case, demanded a bribe of Rs 30,000, to book his brother only on charges of voluntarily causing hurt (Section 323 of IPC) and criminal intimidation (Section 506 of IPC). Kulwaranjit told Manpreet that if Harbans made a payment of Rs 30,000, he would not be booked on charges of attempt to murder.
The SI then then introduced Manpreet and his brother Harbans to Dhiman, who agreed to reduce the bribe amount to Rs 25,000. Following a complaint to the CBI, a trap was laid and Subhash was arrested near the Manimajra police station while accepting the bribe. Kulwaranjit was arrested in the evening from the Manimajra police station on September 26.