The delay in completing the probe into two recent high-profile cases has put a question mark on the functioning of the special investigation teams (SITs) constituted for the purpose.
In one case, there was a firing incident in Rama Mandi during polling for the Talwandi Sabo assembly byelection on August 21. However, not even an FIR has been registered so far in the case, let alone identifying any of the accused.
In the second case, the probe by an SIT into the alleged suicide by a woman and her two daughters in Goniana town near here is inconclusive even after one month.
In the Rama Mandi case, the police investigation seems to be stuck as the forensic laboratory report on the bullet casings is awaited. Some persons had opened fire outside a polling booth when Akali and Congress candidates were present there. The Congress had claimed that alleged supporters of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) opened fire. Three bullet casings (shells) were found on the spot.
Then superintendent of police (SP, detective) Swaran Singh Khanna was heading the three-member SIT in this case, but he has since been transferred. Then station house officer (SHO), Rama Mandi, who was part of the SIT too, has also been replaced. Incumbent SP (detective) Kuldeep Sharma was not available for comment. Rama Mandi SHO Sikander Singh said, “A cop was sent to Kharar for getting the forensic laboratory report on Tuesday. She will report soon.”
In the other case, Amanpreet Kaur (32) and her daughters Guneet Kaur (4) and Mehreen Kaur (1) allegedly committed suicide. Their bodies were found in a waterworks tank at Goniana on November 15. Based on a complaint by Karamjit Singh, Amanpreet’s father, the police had booked seven persons under Section 304-B of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for forcing the woman and her daughters to commit suicide after harassing her demanding dowry.
An SIT headed by SP (headquarters) Jasvir Singh is yet to conclude the investigation in the case in which district Youth Akali Dal president Balkar Singh Brar and the woman’s husband, Gurlal Singh, are among the accused. Gurlal has been arrested, while the rest are still at large.
About a week ago, the SP had said that the probe would be completed in a week or so. When asked about it on Monday, he said he was out of town and would be able to say something on the matter only after two-three days.
Bathinda senior superintendent of police (SSP) Inder Mohan Singh Bhatti expressed ignorance of the Rama Mandi firing incident but promised to look into the matter. He added that the DSP, Bhucho, was probing the suicide case. The police will act as per the findings, he added.