The Punjab government has told the Punjab and Haryana high court that it will videotape cases where police act on a tip-off about a large consignment of contraband being smuggled.
Inspector general of police (IGP) and state narcotics control bureau chief Ishwar Singh, who was present before a bench on court orders, said that the government was considering taping operations launched on tip-offs and at checkpoints (nakas) .
Singh was replying to court queries during the resumed hearing of a bail petition by a Kapurthala resident in which the court had summoned him. The petitioner’s counsel, IPS Kohli, alleged that the exercise of seizing contraband has been reduced to a “farce”. “Punjab Police has now made a profroma in Gurmukhi, wherein by a printed format, a question is shown to have been put to the accused as to whether he wishes to get himself examined by a gazetted officer or a magistrate or by the arresting officer. Thereafter, the proforma is simply filled in with a few words, which are handwritten to suit the situation,” he said.
Singh said a circular has been issued. He said in cases where a police team of four to five rounds up a suspect, the person will be taken to a magistrate in cases where there is no threat of an accused disposing of the contraband.