Police produce Vijay Singh, who allegedly shot dead assistant town and country planning officer Shail Bala during an anti-demolition drive on May 1, in a court in Kasauli on May 4.(PTI Photo)
Police produce Vijay Singh, who allegedly shot dead assistant town and country planning officer Shail Bala during an anti-demolition drive on May 1, in a court in Kasauli on May 4.(PTI Photo)

Himachal CM admits to police lapses in Kasauli murder

The chief minister said necessary directions to ensure the security of officials engaged in the drive to remove illegal encroachments have been given.
Hindustan Times, Shimla | By Gaurav Bisht, Shimla
UPDATED ON MAY 04, 2018 11:12 PM IST

Himachal Pradesh chief minister Jai Ram Thakur on Friday admitted lapses which resulted in killing of assistant town planner Shail Bala  who was supervising demolition drive in hill town Kasauli.

Thakur  who also holds the home portfolio regretted the callousness of the cops accompanying the  team of official  during the demolition drive  in Kasauli. He said police did not adopt adequate security measures and should also have checked in for fire arms before initiating  the demolition drive.

“The police present at the incident site did not act with promptness. Their callousness gave chance to the culprit to flee from the scene of crime. Moreover, the  police did not take  adequate precautionary measures before initiating the  demolition drive, I regret  killings. At least they should have ensured that there was no weapon in the building,” the CM said.

“I admit that whatsoever happened in Kasauli should not have occurred. Necessary directions to ensure the  security of  officials engaged in the drive to remove illegal encroachments and unauthorised structure have been passed to the departments  concerned,” said Thakur,  who further assured action against  those found guilty for callousness.

 Admits shortcomings of govt and dist admin

Thakur admitted to shortcomings of government and district administration. “We have learnt a big lesson from  Kasauli incident. In future, the government will ensure that the orders of any court whether state, apex or  the national green tribunal are implemented effectively,” he said.

He expressed satisfaction over the arrest of the guest house owner Vijay Singh who shot dead assistant town and country planner Shail Bala Sharma and injured another labourer  Gulab Singh with gun shot in Kasauli on Tuesday.

“State government has decided to confer Himachal Gaurav Purskar to the slain officer who laid down her life while performing her duty. Apart from it Rs 5 lakh financial assistance has already been announced by the state government, it was also decided that the family of the deceased would be provided full salary for her remaining service period,” said he.

Further action to be taken after Shimla DC’s report

The CM had ordered a magisterial probe after the killing. He said further action will be taken once the Shimla divisional commissioner (DC) submits the probe report.

 The DC has been asked to enquire all relevant aspects of the incident, including the circumstances that led to the incident and to fix the responsibility of the people responsible for the lapse. The probe report has to be submitted within 15 days.

Thakur said the state government has already submitted a status report in the court and another would be submitted on  May 9.  Taking jibe at the opposition Congress for the hue and cry over illegal construction, the CM said, “All the illegal construction did not took place is last three months. The onus of illegal constructions lies with successive governments.

Guv summons DGP

 Governor Acharya Devvrat on Friday summoned director general of police Sita Ram Mardi and inquired about the progress in the case. He asked the top cop to ensure such incidents do not occur in future.

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