Finally, state govt expresses solidarity with girl's family
Twenty-five days after Faridkot girl Shruti Sachdeva's abduction, the political and media advisers of Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal on Thursday expressed solidarity with the victim's family and promised that the culprits would be arrested at the earliest.chandigarh Updated: Oct 18, 2012 21:18 IST
Twenty-five days after Faridkot girl Shruti Sachdeva's abduction, the political and media advisers of Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal on Thursday expressed solidarity with the victim's family and promised that the culprits would be arrested at the earliest.
Mahesh Inder Singh Grewal, CM's political adviser, and Harcharan Bains, CM's media adviser, addressed a joint press conference to convey that both Badal and deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal felt that Shruti (15) was like their own daughter and the state government would leave no stone unturned to locate her and punish the guilty.
Asked why it took 25 days for the Badals to express solidarity with Shruti's parents, who have been protesting against the inaction of the Punjab Police since September 24, the day she was abducted, Grewal said, "Better late than never."
Badal, Sukhbir, Akali MP from Bathinda Harsimrat Kaur Badal and Punjab revenue minister Bikram Singh Majithia are yet to visit the girl's residence or meet her parents. Sukhbir cancelled his visit to Faridkot on October 14 and skipped a bhog ceremony which he was scheduled to attend.
On the role of the state police, who have come under fire from all quarters for mishandling the case, Grewal said a detailed inquiry would be conducted into the matter. "Our first aim is to trace the girl and apprehend the culprits. We can later scrutinise the role of the Punjab Police in the entire episode. In case the police are found wanting after an investigation, the officials concerned would not be spared," Grewal added.
Amid public outrage against police inaction, the Akali-BJP government had on October 12 transferred then Ferozepur range DIG (deputy inspector general) Paramraj Singh Umranangal and then Faridkot senior superintendent of police (SSP) Gurinder Singh Dhillon. Later, the government claimed that these were routine transfers.
Later, additional director general of police (ADGP, law and order) SK Sharma and Bathinda zone inspector general (IG) Nirmal Singh Dhillon had admitted at a press conference that there had been lapses on the part of senior police officers.
Grewal lashed out at the Punjab Congress, especially Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Sunil Jakhar, for politicising the issue. "The Punjab Congress is baking political bread on the sensitive case of abduction of Shruti and launching a mischievous, baseless, motivated and politically aimed campaign against the chief minister and deputy chief minister for their petty political gains," said Grewal.
Grewal said shielding the accused was the Congress' culture, not of the Akali-BJP government. Accusing the Congress of using the Shruti case to deflect public attention from Coalgate and "Vadragate", Grewal said taking a delegation to the governor (at Raj Bhawan) instead of the CM reflected the petty politicisation of sensitive cases by the Congress. Jakhar