BLAMING THE previous SAD-BJP government and the incumbent Congress regime in equal measure, Justice (retired) Zora Singh, who had inquired into the 2015 desecration incidents, Wednesday said that while proper investigation into the incidents of desecration of Guru Granth Sahib and police firing in Behbal Kalan was not done in 2015 under then Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, the Capt Amarinder Singh-led government too was dragging its feet on the issue.
Justice Zora Singh, who recently joined AAP, told mediapersons that his inquiry report had brought out negligence in the investigation with indications that the “go-slow attitude” of the police was prompted by the then government. His commission report, submitted in July 2016, was not acted upon or made public till date and the new government under Captain Amarinder Singh instead constituted the Justice Ranjit Singh Commission to conduct the probe afresh.
Stating that the Punjab Police had carried out “shoddy” investigation at the behest of some “higher-ups or political persons”, Zora Singh claimed that on one hand, several key persons were not even interrogated by the police, two senior policemen who were part of the Special Investigation Team (SIT) did not even conduct any investigation.
“When sacrilege incidents took place in 2015, the state government was headed by Parkash Singh Badal and home portfolio was with Sukhbir Singh Badal,” Singh said. He added that “Proper investigation was not done. Had there been proper investigation, the matter would have been clear,” said Singh, who was accompanied by Sangrur MLA Aman Arora and Kotkapura MLA Kultar Singh Sandhwan.
“SP Amarjit Singh and a DSP Gurjit Singh Romana gave an affidavit that they did not even go for investigation. Six persons were named by Sikh religious organisations but they were not even interrogated by the police,” he said naming all six.
He added that the police did not even conduct satisfactory investigation into the role of the Granthi of the Gurdwara at Burj Jawahar Singh Wala village from where Guru Granth Sahib had been stolen. “When I asked them why Granthi had not been interrogated in custody, the police said he was a heart patient. I asked if they had conducted a medical examination to ascertain that condition, the police said no,” he said.
At one point during his media interaction, Singh and the AAP MLAs accompanying him got flustered at the intense questioning and attempted to walk away before resuming their seat again.
“During inquiry, it came to the fore that the police initially had suspicion about Granthi (priest) of the gurdwara. The theft took place when he was not present in the Gurdwara. He did not tell anybody before leaving gurdwara. However, the police did not carry out his custodial interrogation,” said Singh.
“Some women had also seen two suspects in gurdwara. But some policemen said sketches of suspects were made and few said no sketches were prepared. Sketches were not released to the media for the identification of suspects,” he further claimed.
“Why police did not carry out proper investigation? Whether there was any person, some higher ups or political person who were not wanting proper investigation by police,” he questioned.
Justice Zora Singh further added that during the investigations, it came to the notice that the sketches of the Granthis and other sewadar of the gurdwara, were not released to the media for reasons better known to them. “Some women had also seen some suspicious persons but their sketches were also not made nor released to the media for identification,” he said.
The retired judge said that after Captain Amarinder Singh came to power he had hopes that the investigation would be done in a proper manner but this did not happen. “SIT officers said we never went for investigation. Why were they made members then? On whose orders did they not go? Action should have been taken against them. Amarinder should give a reply on this within 24 hours. Who are they trying to save,” questioned Justice Zora Singh.
He also said his report into the incidents did not mention any role of Dera Sacha Sauda. He also said that he had made no recommendation against the then DGP, Sumedh Singh Saini.