Updated: April 25, 2021 11:51:12 am
Days after the Punjab and Haryana High Court quashed Punjab Police IG Kunwar Vijay Partap-led Special Investigation Team’s (SIT) probe into the 2015 Kotkapura police firing case, Cabinet minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa said that his own party’s government in Punjab was very much responsible for the delay in the case reaching its logical conclusion.
Speaking on the post-sacrilege firing cases, Randhawa, who was in Moga on Friday, said, “Deri hoyi hai… bahut deri hoyi hai… saadi layi vi eh galat gall hai.. (There has been a delay, a long delay. This isn’t right for us too….)”
Speaking to The Indian Express, Randhawa said, “There is no denying the fact that there has been a delay in delivering justice to victims of police firing in Kotkapura and Behbal Kalan cases. Someone’s responsibility has to be fixed for this inexplicable delay. Our own government is also responsible for it… Four years (since Congress came to power in Punjab) and we could not submit challans in time,” said Randhawa.
A number of protestors were injured in Kotkapura of district Faridkot on October 14, 2015 (during SAD-BJP government) after police allegedly opened fire at them when they were staging a dharna against the sacrilege of Guru Granth Sahib.
The protest was against sacrilege incident which happened on October 12, 2015 when pages of the holy scripture were found strewn at Bargari village of district Faridkot. In a related incident at village Behbal Kalan, the police firing claimed lives of two protestors on the same day on October 14, 2015.
Further referring to Justice (retd) Ranjit Singh Commission’s report, that was instituted by Captain Amarinder Singh in 2017 with its final report submitted in August 2018, Randhawa said, “What was the need of another investigation when Ranjit Singh panel had already submitted the probe report. Why were the report’s findings not accepted as it is and challan not presented on the basis of it? Further probes only delayed the process and victims and their families have been denied justice. Our government has been equally responsible for this delay,” the minister added.
Justice Ranjit Singh commission had indicted former CM Parkash Singh Badal and former DGP Sumedh Singh Saini for firing at protesters in Behbal Kalan at Kotkapura leading to death of two.
“CM himself holds the Home portfolio and only he can answer other queries related to the issue. But overall our government is very much responsible for the delay in justice in these cases,” said Randhawa, clarifying that he wasn’t talking about Bargari sacrilege case (in which separate probe is ongoing by SIT led by IG SPS Parmar).
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