The Balachaur sub division of Nawanshahr district is getting the tag of land of missing persons as in 19 months, 65 persons went missing under mysterious circumstances, out of which 30 are yet to be traced by the police.
The bodies of five missing persons were recovered by the police from separate places or time in this sub division. Hindustan Times has collected information under the Right to Information Act, 2005, from Nawanshahr senior superintendent of police and gathered details of missing persons from January 2013 to July 2014.
The family members of missing persons blame the police for their lack of seriousness in finding their family members. They alleged police do not move from filing a daily diary report (DDR) in such cases and whenever people hold a protest, police register first information report (FIR) against unidentified persons.
A team from Hindustan Times visited the families of missing persons in Balachaur who have been waiting for their loved ones for several months.
Sohan Singh Atwal, a resident of Balachaur who was working as a financer, had gone to cast his vote on April 30 this year during the parliamentary elections but failed to reach home.
Atwal's family, including his daughter and son from Australia, reached Balachaur to locate him but returned empty-handed. Atwal's wife Mahinder Kaur now lives with a caretaker and is waiting for her husband. She said they had circulated pamphlets and posters with picture of Atwal but there was no information about him.
Similarly, the family of 11-year-old Nisha, who went missing on June 12 this year, is waiting for its daughter for the past three months.
Nisha's father Ashok Kumar Sharma, a resident of Prem Nagar in Kathgarh, complained to the police that his daughter had gone to the market on the evening of June 12 but failed to return.
Sharma further said that he, along with other family members, visited each street of the area with Nisha's photographs but to no avail. The Kathgarh police registered an FIR on July 16, one month after her disappearance.
HT also met the family of Rakesh Joshi in Balachaur who is missing since November 3, 2003. There are no clues about his whereabouts too. Among missing persons, 22 had gone missing in just seven months of this year (January 2014-July 2014) in which only nine persons were either recovered by the family or police or came back themselves. 11 people are still to be traced and two were found dead under mysterious circumstances in Balachaur.
When contacted, superintendent of police (detective) Dilbagh Singh Pannu said he would talk to senior officials in this regard and a special investigation team would be formed to trace the missing persons.
RK Jaiswal, DIG (Ropar range) said he would talk to the Nawanshahr senior superintendent of police (SSP) in this regard and seek a report from him about missing persons in Balachaur.