The Punjab and Haryana High Court Tuesday granted anticipatory bail to Shiromani Akali Dal leader Mantar Singh Brar and two other accused in an FIR filed in 2018 relating to the sacrilege incidents of 2015. The accused were on interim bail since last year.
The Special Investigation Team probing the sacrilege incidents and police firing in which two civilians were killed in Faridkot in 2015, has already filed challan in the case against at least six accused before the sessions court. Charges are yet to be framed in the case, which is listed for next hearing on January 17. The other two accused, whose anticipatory bail was made absolute on Tuesday, include Gurdeep Singh and Baljit Singh. While Gurdeep Singh, a sub inspector, was the station house office (SHO) Kotkapura, Baljit Singh was a deputy superintendent of police (DSP) then.
While confirming the anticipatory bail of the three accused persons, the High Court said the challan has already been presented against the accused in the trial court and it is no more a case where custodial interrogation is required. A detailed order was not immediately available.
While Brar, a former MLA, had alleged political vendetta behind the registration of case against him, the prosecution story is that the statement of the complainant was not then registered due to the pressure from the accused. According to the SIT, the SHO of the Kotkapura police station was also working “under the influence” of Brar and several calls were exchanged between the two. Brar was also in contact with the then Chief Minister and other senior officers also and had directed for use of force against the protestors, as per the SIT.
The allegations against then DSP Baljit Singh and SI Gurdeep Singh are that they made a deliberate attempt to destroy the material evidence and fabricate the relevant facts of case by putting forward a “concocted story” of self defence. The injured persons were forcibly shifted to the private hospitals and MLRs of many of the injured persons were not prepared, as per the prosecution.