Three months after an assistant sub-inspector (ASI) of the Punjab police, Gurdev Singh, was shot dead by drug addicts near a restaurant on the Jalandhar-Phagwara national highway, the victim's family still awaits the promised government help.
Even as there are no signs that the main accused would be arrested, the promised job to the slain cop's eldest son has also failed to materialise. No ex-gratia has been announced.
When HT team visited the victim's family at the police lines, widow Gurmeet Kaur said, "We have received no help. In spite of assurances from officials, we have been left to fend on our own. Chairman district planning committee Sarbjeet Singh Makkar did visit us, but financial help is yet to come."
"When a prisoner, Sarabjeet, was killed in Pakistan jail, the government was so generous? Here, my husband died on duty and yet there has been no justice. The job promise for my son has been held up in technicalities. Is this how Punjab rewards its honest policemen," she questioned.
She claimed that some of her husband's colleagues had now started to shirk duty, after the government's doublespeak and apathy.
Parminder, the eldest son, in Italy on a work-permit at the time of the death, told HT, "Even in the case of accidental deaths, the government announces an ex-gratia. In our case, there has been no announcement."
"Kapurthala police collected Rs 9 lakh for us by contributing one day salary from all its employees. Now, the inordinate delay on my compassionate in the police is haunting us."
"A decision has to be taken on his return to Italy. If the government appoints him on compassionate grounds, it will be the best," said Gurmeet Kaur.
"The failure of police in arresting the accused pains us deeply. If a cop's murder on duty case cannot be solved on time, what will be the fate of ordinary people."Kapurthala SSP Inderbir Singh said, "Rules only allow his appointment as an constable, but as he has good qualification, we have recommended his case for appointment as an SI. His father exhibited extraordinary courage. I hope, the case is decided in his favour after the panchayat polls."
"As far as the arrest of the main accused, Palwinder Singh Bhinda and Rajinder Singh Mintu, investigations and raids are on by the police of Kapurthala, Jalandhar and Mohali. They will be arrested soon," he added.