Sukhdev Singh Namdhari, alleged conspirator in the Delhi farmhouse shootout, apparently got his passport issued by submitting wrong particulars and fake documents to the Jalandhar passport office during the Congress regime (2002-07) in Punjab.
Surjit Singh, sarpanch of Jania village on the Jalandhar-Ferozepur border, told HT, "Intelligence Bureau (IB) sleuths visited me six months ago to inquire about Namdhari's antecedents. They were carrying a photocopy of Namdhari's passport, which mentioned that he was a Jania village resident. Though I inspected the official record, I didn't find anyone by the name of Sukhdev Singh Namdhari."
He said IB sleuths informed him that Namdhari had also got a ration card issued by showing himself as a Jania village resident and the same was used to obtain the passport.
"There used to be one 'Kuka' family in the village. It migrated from Jania more than six years ago. I was surprised that Namdhari procured the passport by submitting the address of our village without getting his particulars verified from the sarpanch. The IB officials prepared my statement and got my signatures on it before leaving the place," he said.
Surjit said then panch Lehmbar Singh might have helped Namdhari in procuring the passport as both belong to the same community. "Lehmbar was very close to a former Congress MP from Jalandhar," he added.
Lohian police station SHO Manjit Singh confirmed that IB officials contacted the police for inspection of records in the Namdhari passport case, even though old records were not available in the police station.
Senior superintendent of police (SSP) Yurinder Singh Hayre said he came to know about the Namdhari passport case through the media, adding that a detailed inquiry would be conducted to ascertain the facts.
Passport officer Parneet Singh was not available for comment.