Living in abject poverty and suffering from cancer, a Barnala woman in April last year had attempted suicide by jumping into the Harigarh canal. But, an alert Punjab Police constable posted on a highway patrol dived into the fast-flowing canal and saved the woman.
And for this act of courage, constable Kamaljit Singh—No 547/Barnala—was on Thursday selected for the chief minister’s ‘Rakshak Padak’. Punjab government gives this award on the Independence Day in recognition of showing selflessness despite facing grave physical risk.
CM Parkash Singh Badal has approved the award for the constable. Narinder Bhargav, Fazilka superintendent of police, Gurpreet Singh, commandant of Commando Training Centre at Bahadurgarh in Patiala and sub-inspector Amarjit Singh (No 1037/PAP) will be awarded CM’s medal for “outstanding devotion to duty”.
“I was on duty at the Harigarh canal bridge (Barnala-Sangrur road) checkpost. I saw a woman jumping into the canal from the bridge. Some people were present there at that time, but none dared to take the plunge. I dived into the canal and succeeded in saving her,” constable Kamaljit Singh told Hindustan Times. “She was a poor woman who didn’t have the money for her cancer treatment. So, she wanted to kill herself,’ he added.
The CM’s Rakshak Padak—made of bronze with gold plating on it--is awarded to non Indian Police Service officers up to the rank of superintendent of police (SP). The face of the medal has chief minister’s Rakshak Padak written in Punjabi with logo of the state government. The other side has crossed swords with a sun.
The CM’s medal for outstanding devotion to duty is awarded to police officials who have displayed consistently excellent level of performance on duty.