HC notice to Punjab on CBI probe plea into death of dera follower
The Punjab and Haryana high court has sought response from the Punjab government and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on the plea from wife of Dera Sacha Sauda follower Mohinder Pal Singh Bittu, who was murdered in the Nabha jail.
The high court bench of justice Raj Mohan Singh has sought response by December 2 and also asked to bring on record probe report. The plea by Santosh Kumari alleges that senior Punjab Police officers were involved in the conspiracy that was not probed by the investigation agencies. The plea seeks a CBI investigation into the case.
Bittu, who was booked in the 2015 sacrilege cases and arrested three years later, was killed by two inmates, Maninder Singh and Gursewak Singh, both serving life terms for murder, on June 22, 2019, with iron rods. On September 5 that year, the police had filed a chargesheet against four persons, including the attackers. Thereafter, a Patiala court framed charges against them and the trial is underway. The plea also seeks stay on the trial proceedings.
The plea claims Bittu was brutally killed in a larger conspiracy using judicial tools when he was lodged in the Nabha jail and the murder was committed in collusion with the police and politicians who were named by Bittu in the note.
“Police officers mentioned in the note subjected my husband to third-degree torture to pressurise him to confess to his complicity in the sacrilege episode. He was falsely implicated in a case of the theft of bir (copy) of Guru Granth Sahib as part of a deep-rooted conspiracy due to political pressure,” the plea says, adding that since many senior police officers of the state are “involved”, it would be in the interest of justice that further investigation be conducted by the CBI, the plea demands.