The Punjab Home Department on Saturday issued a notification directing Jalandhar Divisional Commissioner Baldeo Purushartha to conduct a magisterial probe into the Amritsar tragedy and fix responsibility within four weeks.
Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh ordered the probe soon after reaching Amritsar in the morning. He is learnt to have given instructions that the inquiry, its terms and deadline should be notified on Saturday itself.
Additional Chief Secretary, Home, Nirmaljit Singh Kalsi, issued the notification appointing Purushartha as Special Executive Magistrate. The notification empowers him to exercise all such powers conferred upon an Executive Magistrate while conducting this probe.
The terms of reference mandate conducting “a thorough probe into the unfortunate incident and to examine acts of omission and commission by an individual or agency, if any, and accordingly fix responsibility”, and “to suggest remedial measures to ensure that such unfortunate incident does not reoccur”.
Asked whether there were any lapses on part of the Railways, Amarinder said the probe will look into it and will ascertain whether approvals for holding the function were given.
Amarinder wanted to visit Amritsar on Friday night but was advised against it by the district authorities, who did not want a VIP movement to divert attention from rescue and relief efforts, a government statement said.