Nineteen people have been booked for the clash that took place between two Akali factions at Jaitu town in this district on Tuesday.
Seven people were injured in the clash between two groups of Sewewala village residents.
The clash lasted for half an hour at a place less than 100 metre from the police post. A local told HT, "The clash started at the commission agent shop of one Sadhu Singh. Five others - Sadhu's son, grandsons and a relative -- ran out of the shop to save themselves. But the attackers chased them to the Ramleela ground, about 150 metres away, and assaulted them."
Another local said, "The other group allegedly belonging to Ranjeet Singh comprised around 20 people. They beat up the three men who fell on the ground. The clash lasted for half an hour but no police official visited the spot."
Another local said, "There was so much terror that no one came forward to intervene. A policeman who tried to intervene was warned against it. My wife asked me to intervene, but I was afraid. The attackers beat up the other group. By the time the police arrived, the attackers had fled."
The local police did not take timely action, eyewitnesss alleged.
SSP Gurpreet Singh Toor said, "As soon as I got a call, I told the officials to provide protection to the victim group as they had expressed the fear that they might again be attacked at Guru Gobind Singh Medical College and Hospital. The Jaitu SHO took care of the injured and the Kotkapura SHO was told to protect them on the way and in the medical college where they were admitted. There was no delay on the part of the police. In case there was some delay, I will look into the matter."
A Jaitu resident said, "Chamkaur Singh, who later visited the medical college, fired six shots at the two brothers belonging to the rival group that had attacked his uncle. Chamkaur otherwise is a decent man. The other group which is politically connected had been harasing them for long."
The SSP said, "We have registered two FIRs, one on the complaint of Gurbaksh Singh against Chamkaur Singh. Chamkaur was produced in the court of the chief judicial magistrate and has been remanded in two-day police custody. The other FIR has been registered at Jaitu on the statement of Sukhwinder Singh, son of Sadhu Singh, against 18 people."
Six people have been admitted to the Faridkot medical college while one Gurbax Singh was referred to Dayanand Medical College Ludhiana.