Behbal Kalan police firing: Zora panel summons IG Umranangal

  • Prabhjit Singh, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Mar 31, 2016 11:37 IST
Two youths had died in the Behbal Kalan police firing during an anti-sacrilege protest in October last year. (HT Photo)

The Justice Zora Singh Commission of Inquiry on Wednesday summoned Punjab inspector general of police (IG) Paramraj Singh Umranangal as part of its probe into the Behbal Kalan police firing in which two youths were killed during an anti-sacrilege protest in October last year. He has been asked to appear before the commission in the first week of April.

The move came after the commission recorded the statement of suspended Faridkot senior superintendent of police (SSP) Charanjit Sharma last month. Sharma was suspended in October last year following the death of two youths. However, the police are yet to initiate action against him.

Umranangal had been evading response to letters sent to him by the commission since January this year. He was asked to send details of the arms and ammunition used by cops during the firing incident.

The commission also conveyed to additional director general of police (ADGP) IPS Sahota that it had been getting a cold response from police officials in joining investigations.

“The ADGP appeared before the commission on Wednesday and he has been asked to submit details police findings and other information on the firing incident within a week,” justice Zora Singh (retd) told Hindustan Times.

Besides Umranangal, the commission has also summoned Faridkot senior superintendent of police (SSP) Sukhwinder Singh Mann.

Sikh preachers also summoned

Sikh preachers, including Panthpreet Singh, Ranjit Singh Dhadrianwale, Giani Kewal Singh, Gursewak Singh, Satnam Singh, Bhai Amrik Singh Ajnala and Avtar Singh Sadhawala, have also been asked to appear before the commission next month. Some of them have already sent their statements in the form of affidavits to the probe panel. The commission wants to record their statements into the sacrilege incidents of Guru Granth Sahib at Bargari and police action on protesters at Kotkapura.

Panel to visit Faridkot on Thursday

The probe panel will visit Faridkot and Behbal Kalan on Thursday for the third time to look for material information, besides recording statements of residents.

Sources said the material information includes empty shells of cartridges found from the spot after police firing at Behbal Kalan. The empty shells are with one of the witnesses, Baba Kheta Singh, local priest of a gurdwara at Behbal Khurd village, who is yet to record his statement with the commission.

On January 12 this year, the commission had sought details of arms and ammunition, including live and empty cartridges, reported or deposited at the time of arrival and departure of cops at the police stations from Umranangal, who was then posted as the Ludhiana commissioner of police.

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