As the Akali-BJP government takes a resolve for the well-being of the Punjabi non-resident Indians (NRIs), here comes a case of a Germany-based NRI, Gurjit Singh, whose signatures were allegedly forged to transfer his bus route permit allegedly in connivance with senior transport officials.
"I was not even present in India at the time the false documents (agreement for transfer of the route permit) were signed, that is on April 15, 2011," stated Gurjit Singh in his affidavit signed by the Indian Embassy's consulate DK Gupta in Berlin.
Gurjit's father Gurdeep Singh has been making rounds of the police officials at Batala to lodge an FIR since the family came to know that the route permit was transferred in another person's name, but to no avail.
On October 14, 2011, then Jalandhar Regional Transport Authority secretary Jaskiran Singh, a PCS officer, had transferred the Batala-Dhainpur-Ramal route permit (no. 147/Mini/GSP) in the name of local transporter Gurwant Singh of Sheikhuwali village in Gurdaspur.
The PCS officer even wrote in his proceedings for the said mutation on the basis of the "fake" agreement dated April 15, 2011 that "Gurjit Singh, the applicant transferor appearing in person submitted that he had decided to transfer the bus along with the rights of the said route permit to the applicant transferee because due to some unavoidable circumstances he is unable to control the transport business".
"As the bus that was actually managed by a third party had met with an accident, we came to know about the transfer of our permit only when the bus manager stopped giving us the returns," Gurjit's father Gurdeep Singh told HT on phone from his village Verka in Amritsar district.
Gurjit has now written a letter in the form of a complaint to deputy chief minister Sukhbir Badal, demanding the restoration of the route permit and punishment to all those officials who allegedly connived with the local transporter to transfer the permit on the basis of a "fake" document/agreement that bore his forged signatures.
Batala SSP SS Mand, who was approached by the aggrieved NRI's father, had ordered an inquiry into the matter to the Batala City police station in December 2012, but the old man was instead asked for evidence to prove that his son's signatures were forged.
"I was told that my son is needed to be present here for the probe," the 75-year-old man said.
"Justice being done with NRIs is against your claims," stated Gurjit Singh in his letter to the deputy chief minister, citing the dates and the proceedings of the hearing in which the PCS officer had marked him as present while deciding the transfer of his route permit.
The documents in the possession of HT were procured by the aggrieved NRI under the RTI Act.