It’s under preventive custody that Sant Samaj leader Baljit Singh Daduwal, 53, was held in the Faridkot jail since October 9, the Punjab government has submitted in the Punjab and Haryana high court on Tuesday.
Haryana Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (ad hoc) member Daduwal was arrested soon after his release on bail from Faridkot, based on intelligence inputs that he and hundreds of supporters waiting outside the jail planned to storm Gurdwara Jandalisar in Bathinda for forced takeover.
In his reply to the court, Faridkot executive magistrate and tehsildar Narinder Singh Saini has stated that on October 9, he served a notice on Daduwal and his accomplices, Harjinder Singh and Randhir Singh, informing them that they could either furnish surety bonds of Rs 50,000 each for release or they would be moved into judicial custody. He claimed that all three men had signed the notices duly, and in those refused to furnish the bail bonds, which is why they had been remanded in judicial custody till October 17, since none had come forward to stand as a surety for their release on bail.
It was submitted that the present petition before the HC was not maintainable, and instead a bail application should be filed before executive magistrate in Faridkot.
The other side
Appearing for the petitioner, advocate Gurvinder Singh Sidhu argued that the police act was an insult of the court, since they themselves had mentioned Daduwal’s address as Gurdwara Jandalisar in the ‘kalandara’ (police report) and then put him under preventive custody on pretext of stopping him from taking over the same shrine.
Three villagers of Kot Shamir in Bathinda also filed an affidavit in the court on Tuesday that Gurdwara Jandalisar in their village had been raised on their private 2-acre land and they had handed over its management to Daduwal in 1997 of their free will. They submitted that the gurdwara was neither controlled by Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee nor funded by it. It is on the road between Talwandi Sabo and Bathinda.
The next hearing is on October 16.