Chandigarh liquor vend extortion case: Two policemen identified in CCTV footage
After a liquor store owner in Sector 40 complained about alleged extortion by policemen and submitted CCTV footage substantiating his claims, Chandigarh police have identified the men in the video as crime branch head constables.
Both men, however, have not been traced as yet even as other liquor contractors have come forward with more complaints of extortion.
Confirming this on Tuesday, UT senior superintendent of police (SSP) Kuldeep Singh Chahal said, “Based on the video footage we have identified the cops as Anil and Pawan. Both were clearly visible in the video and we are tracking them down and will take action against them.”
Officials revealed that Pawan and Anil had been missing since the liquor contractor complained to the police even though no money exchanged hands in the CCTV footage.
However, police officials privy to the investigation said that the behaviour of the two policemen in question seemed suspicious. “In the CCTV footage it can be seen that the policemen are entering the liquor store multiple times on different days and the way they are speaking to the shopkeepers is suspicious. They can be seen entering other shops too and repeating this, which confirms what the complainant was saying,” said an official who wished to remain anonymous as he was not authorised to speak to the media.
A case under Section 383 (extortion) of the Indian penal Code (IPC) was registered on November 29 at the Sector 39 police station against unidentified persons. Police officials revealed that although the accused had been identified in the video, the case was lodged against unknown persons as the liquor contractor hadn’t named them in his complaint.
Assistant superintendent of police (south) Shruti Arora confirmed that “around four more liquor contractors have approached us alleging extortion. However, they haven’t presented any evidence and we are verifying their complaints.”
A notice will be sent to the crime branch on Wednesday to summon both the identified policemen, Arora added
The matter came to light when the liquor contractor from Sector 40 (name withheld) approached the police with what he alleged was CCTV footage of policemen extorting money from his vends. He claimed that he was paying them Rs 96,000 per month for the past few months.
Earlier too, inspector Ranjit Singh of the operations wing of the Chandigarh police had tried to extort Rs 2.5 lakh from a Sector 21 based liquor contractor. He was transferred to the police lines last week and a departmental inquiry initiated against him.