The Armed Forces Tribunal (AFT) bench in Chandigarh has asked the Punjab home secretary and director general of police (DGP) to reply what action is being taken to arrest Pakistani spy Kuldeep Singh, who is on the run for more than two years.
The bench headed by justice Surinder Singh Thakur observed that even on February 3, the DGP had been asked to assign an officer not below the rank of an SP (superintendent of police) to monitor the arrest of Kuldeep Singh but “nothing, so far, has been heard from his side”. The AFT had then also sent non-bailable warrants for execution to the Batala senior superintendent of police but neither a compliance report nor any intimation was sent to the bench.
The AFT now has ordered: “We require the Batala SSP or the executing officer concerned to whom the warrants may have been assigned for execution to show cause and be present before this tribunal to explain the reasons on the next date of hearing, failing which, we may be compelled to take appropriate action for contempt.” The bench also observed that even the chief judicial magistrate concerned of Gurdaspur had not dispatched the spy’s bail bonds that the AFT had asked for. The next hearing is on July 1.
Kuldeep Singh was dismissed from the army for spying and stealing army property in 2006. He had crossed over to Pakistan along with his service weapon and absented himself for almost five years from 196 Field Regiment until the troops of 25 Punjab caught him. Between December 1999 and August 2004, he had passed on secrets to a Pakistani army officer. In 2010, the Punjab and Haryana high court granted him bail till the pendency of his appeal. After the AFT was formed and the case transferred to it, the appeal was dismissed in January 2014, and Kuldeep Singh (then out on bail) ordered to surrender to the military. But he absconded. Several non-bailable warrants against him have been issued.