While Sikh preacher Ranjit Singh Dhadrianwale has moved the Punjab and Haryana court for a CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation) inquiry into the May 17 murderous attack on him, Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal has claimed police investigation to be fair and said “you can’t arrest anyone on just allegation”.
Speaking here on Friday and referring to Dhadrianwale and Damdami Taksal Sikh seminary head Harnam Singh Dhumma, whom the preacher believes to be behind the attack, the deputy CM said: “It is a fight between two individuals. The government is keen to deliver justice instead of striking a compromise between both.” Dhadrianwale had hinted that Dhumma might be behind the attack that killed preacher’s aide Bhupinder Singh.
On the sidelines of laying the foundation stone of a 150-megawatt (MW) solar-energy plant at Vanwala village on Friday, Sukhbir, accompanied by cabinet minister Bikram Singh Majithia, said being a virtual parliament of Sikhs, Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) has the duty to broker peace between both parties. On Dhadrianwale’s seeking a CBI inquiry, Sukhbir said: “It’s the victim’s right but next they’d demand America’s FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation) to look into the case.”
Drug test for aspiring cops
With different surveys and political parties coming up with different figures related to drug abuse in Punjab, the state government will challenge them by conducting substance-abuse test in the recently advertised police recruitment.
“We will make the test results public for everyone to see the actual picture. The department has received more than 57,000 applications in two days and it expects another more than 2.5 lakh. We have ordered drug-test kits worth `3 crore,” said Sukhbir, adding: “The test is going to challenge the parties that are defaming the state by claiming that 70% of its youth are on drugs.”
‘Solar energy in 2,000 villages by next year’
Cabinet minister Bikram Singh Majithia said by 2017, 2,000 villages would have solar energy and the Centre would honour Punjab on June 7 for installing maximum rooftop solar-power units. Earlier, he inaugurated a 28-MW solar-energy plant worth Rs 201 crore at Killianwali and laid the foundation stone of 150-MW Azure Power project at Muktsar’s Vanwala village.
Radicals meet deputy CM
The Sikh organisations that had organised a radical ‘Sarbat Khalsa’ (Sikh congregation) met deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal at his Badal village house on Friday to seek permission to gather at the Akal Takht, highest temporal seat of the faith, in Amritsar on the 32nd anniversary of Operation Bluestar on June 6.
They want both Dhian Singh Mand, “interim Akal Takht jathedar” of the radicals, and the SGPC-appointed jathedar to address the gathering.
“The deputy CM has asked us to wait till Saturday,” said a member of the Sikh delegation. Sukhbir said he had made it clear to them to maintain peace at all costs.