Bathinda police on Saturday arrested Jarnail Singh, 65, who had tried to assault minister for rural development and panchayats Sikander Singh Maluka at Hamirgarh village in Bathinda on November 20, after he was discharged from Guru Gobind Singh Medical College and Hospital here.
The police reached the hospital in the day and took Jarnail into custody in the evening. “We have arrested him as he was discharged from the hospital,” said inspector Birbal Singh, station house officer, Dialpura police station, Bathinda, where a case against him was registered.
The police had registered a case against Jarnail on the complaint of Kuldeep Chand, personal assistant of the minister, on Friday under Section 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions) and 120-B (whoever is a party to a criminal conspiracy to commit an offence punishable with death, or imprisonment for life) at Dialpura police station.
“The doctors had conducted various tests on him that were found normal. The police had asked the medical authorities to inform them about his being discharged and were keeping a vigil,” sources said.
Dr JP Singh, medial superintendent of the hospital, refused to comment, suggesting that the treating doctors be contacted about his being discharged.
Jarnail’s son Sukhmander Singh said, “My father was not feeling well and needed more treatment, but the police took him into custody.”
Gurdit Singh Sekhon, an Aam Aadmi Party leader from Faridkot, claimed, “The SAD wants to create terror. The police were eager to arrest Jarnail, who is an old man, but they have failed to act against Jarnail’s assaulters, against whom he had submitted a complaint to the Bathinda SSP.”
Jarnail was rushed to the Faridkot hospital last week in an unconscious state after he was brutally beaten up by supporters of the minister and detained for over two hours after he tried to assault the minister who had arrived at the village to address a meeting.
‘Move to pre-empt anticipatory bail’
Jarnail’s counsel Narinder Kumar Jeet said, “I had applied for his anticipatory bail, on which discussion took place in the court of the Bathinda additional district and sessions judge on Friday. It being the weekend, the case was adjourned for Monday. The police have arrested him only to pre-empt his bail order. Besides, the case did not attract Section 353 of the IPC as there was no injury on anyone and Section 186 was a bailable offence. So it is strange that the police arrested him pending his bail order.”