Almost five months after the registration of a case, the police on Wednesday arrested Paramjit Singh, one of the accused in the suicide case of excise and taxation officer (ETO) Ranjit Singh.
The arrest was made after the local court issued warrants twice against the accused.
Paramjit was one of the traders who acted as a complainant in the vigilance bureau (VB) fake trap against Ranjit Singh.
The SAS Nagar police, following a court order in August, had booked superintendent of police (SP) Amandeep Kaur, who was earlier posted with the Punjab vigilance bureau (VB), head constable Harminder Singh and traders Rajinder Singh, Rajiv Sood and Paramjit who acted as complainants in the fake VB trap.
The accused were booked for abetting the ETO's suicide, besides other offences, in the FIR registered at the Phase 1 police station, SAS Nagar. Ranjit Singh, who was falsely implicated in March 2011, had committed suicide a month later while on bail.
"Paramjit, a resident of Tibba village in Jagraon, was produced before the court after the arrest and has been sent to judicial custody till January 9. He is in the transportation business," said deputy superintendent of police (city) RS Sohal. He added, "Raids are on to nab the other accused."
Commenting on the arrest, Manjit Kaur, the ETO's widow, said, "It's an eyewash. The main person who had falsely implicated my husband is Amandeep Kaur. Until she is arrested, all this means nothing."
The special investigation team (SIT) probing the matter had filed a challan before the court, indicting Amandeep Kaur, Harminder Singh and the three traders for conspiring to falsely implicate Ranjit Singh, thus forcing him to commit suicide.
Manjit Kaur, who has been demanding the arrest of all accused, had even accused the police of going slow against them. She had alleged that the police had filed a challan in October without recording the statements of key witnesses. The main witnesses, including IAS officer Mansavi Kumar, IPS officer Harpreet Singh Sidhu and Manjit Kaur were not even contacted.
Kumar and Sidhu had investigated the matter and submitted their report to the chief secretary, indicting the accused and recommending action against them under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), including 306 (abetment to suicide), and the Prevention of Corruption Act.
The court had in November issued warrants against the accused; these were re-issued on December 20.