Despite assurance by none other than Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal to Congress legislature party leader Sunil Jakhar over a month ago, the promise of a probe into alleged political vendetta cases against Congressmen by a DIG-rank officer within 15 days has left the opposition leader fuming.
Badal had, in his March 27 demi-official letter to Jakhar, said that instructions had been issued to get an inquiry conducted into all such cases by a DIG-rank official under the supervision of DGP Sumedh Singh Saini within 15 days. "You will be accordingly informed about action taken in this regard," Badal had then assured.
The DGP, however, sent the list of "vendetta" cases to DIG (border range) Ram Singh, who in turn forwarded the same to Tarn Taran SSP Maninder Singh for getting the inquiry conducted. "I didn't conduct the inquiry myself in these cases. The factual report, received from the SSP Tarn Taran, had been forwarded to the DGP last week," Ram Singh added.
Sources said that Tarn Taran SP (operations) Manmohan Singh conducted inquiry into six cases.
Jakhar told Hindustan Times over phone that he was yet to receive report in such cases. "I met Badal 20 days after the inquiry was ordered to inform him about the inordinate delay in action taken in vendetta cases. He again assured to get the inquiry expedited, but to no avail.
"They are not taking it seriously while this kind of attitude only exhibits total arrogance on the CM's part. It's an eyewash, as the CM has been offering lip service only. Though Badal has been seeking cooperation from us, he is not paying any respect to the opposition," Jakhar alleged.
Meanwhile, deputy commissioner Satwant Singh Johal has termed police raids to arrest Inderjit Singh (74), an Akali-turned-Congressman, in a cheating case as a hurriedly executed exercise without any evidence to support allegations leveled in the complaint. He ordered the Patti sub-divisional magistrate to conduct an inquiry and submit the report at the earliest.
Inderjit Singh was booked under Section 420 of IPC (cheating) on March 21 on a complaint of a brother of Narli village's Akali sarpanch for allegedly duping the latter of Rs five lakh on the pretext of sending him abroad.
"I have been framed in a false case for opposing SAD (Badal) during assembly elections. I am a known social and religious personality of the area and have done nothing wrong in my 74 years of life," Inderjit Singh added.
Meanwhile, Sukhpal Bhullar, Punjab Youth Congress vice-president alleged that "Akali MLA Virsa Singh Valtoha had ensured plum posting for ASI Sukhraj Singh, posted as Khalra police station SHO by superseding over six inspector-rank officials in stark violation of norms".
Valtoha in connivance with the ASI had been framing Congressmen in false cases to settle scores with political opponents, the YC leader claimed, adding that the inquiry was a "sham" since the inquiry officer deliberately didn't incorporate the version of the affected persons.
Sukhraj Singh is a head constable holding ASI's ORP rank.
SSP Maninder Singh, however, maintained that there was nothing wrong in posting an ASI as the SHO. Interestingly, inspectors or sub-inspectors, who pass departmental course, are posted as SHOs.
DGP Saini and the CM Badal were not available for comments despite repeated attempts.