Questioning the recent arrests of around 20 teenaged youths within the span of two weeks, Dal Khalsa has blamed the Punjab Police for 'manipulating the arrests' to dilute the case of Jaspal Singh, who died on March 29 last year after he was hit by a bullet fired by policemen in Gurdaspur.
Party head HS Dhami, in a statement, on Thursday said the case of Jaspal Singh was pending before the Punjab and Haryana high court, where the petitioner has prayed for a CBI inquiry.
Skeptical over the arrest spree, Dhami pointed to the timing of busting of these new militant modules. "The circumstantial evidence signals that there is more to it than what meet the eye," he said.
Narrating the chronology of events, he said, "The Punjab and Haryana high court on September 2 summoned the Punjab chief secretary and director general of police to be personally present in the court on September 10 after the state counsel failed to file the status report in the Jaspal Singh case."
He pointed out that exactly four days after the court reprimanded the state police for their inaction, on September 6, the Fatehgarh Sahib police announced that they had busted a terror module by arresting seven youngsters, who were planning to kill Shiv Sena leader to avenge the murder of a Sikh youth (Jaspal) of Gurdaspur district.
He remarked that a week later, the Gurdaspur police claimed to unearth another "terror module" with the arrest three people, including Sukhjinder Singh, a close relative of deceased Jaspal Singh on similar charges. Dhami said, "The reported statement of Guria village's panchayat and parents of the arrested youth had strongly refuted the police claim."
To instill fear psychosis in the minds of youths in general and family members of Jaspal Singh in particular, his close relative has been framed, Dhami alleged. He alleged that, "It seems that the police want to coerce Jaspal's family against pursuing the case in the court. The police are hell bent on showing Jaspal in poor light so as to dilute his murder case and shield killers."
Dal Khalsa leader took a dig at home minister Sukhbir Singh Badal for showering praise on the Punjab Police, whose style of functioning has always been under suspicion. Condemning the misuse of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967, he said the free-run given by the ruling party to the police has created a scare in Punjab.