The Punjab government on Wednesday formed a special investigation team (SIT) to examine the assault on its IAS officer, KS Pannu, by a handful of Sikh youths at Joshimath in Uttarakhand during the flood-rescue operations.
Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal also took up the matter with his Uttarakhand counterpart, Vijay Bahuguna, and sought "strictest possible legal action against all those involved in the attack", a spokesman here has said.
Pannu came back from Uttarakhand on Tuesday night and, on Wednesday morning, called on Badal at his residence to brief him about the incident and the situation, after which the government decided to form the SIT. A delegation of the Punjab IAS Officers' Association had earlier met the CM to demand a first-information report (FIR) against the attackers and Badal had assured them that it would be done.
The decision came a day after a 9-minute video clipping in which Pannu is being abused and beaten up by a group including two baptized Sikhs went viral on online portal YouTube. Pannu, when contacted, said he could identify the culprits who beat him up mercilessly after accusing him of being "abusive".
In a letter to Bahuguna, Badal sought his personal intervention for prompt police and legal action against the culprits to keep the morale of officers high, the spokesman has added. The Punjab director general of police (DGP), Sumedh Singh Siani, on the CM's directions, constituted the four-member SIT led by inspector general (security) Sanjeev Kalra.
Deputy inspector general Gautam Cheema, DIG (cyber crimes) Kunwar Vijay Partap Singh and Mohali senior superintendent of police Gurpreet Singh Bhullar are others on the special team. DIG Cheema is camping at Gobind Ghat already to look into the incident on the DGP's directions.
"The additional DGP (law and order) has been mandated by the chief minister to take up the issue with Uttarakhand on the basis of the SIT findings for registration of the FIR against all accused," the spokesman further said.