Punjab Sacrilege Case: SIT Chargesheet Points Fingers at Sukhbir Badal Over Police Firing
File photo of SAD leader Sukhbir Singh Badal. (PTI Photo)
Chandigarh: The SIT probing the desecration of scriptures in Punjab in 2015 has filed a chargesheet, claiming that the police firing which killed two protesters was a pre-planned handiwork of the then deputy CM Sukhbir Singh Badal, the former state police chief and the Dera Sacha Sauda head.
The chargesheet filed by the special investigation team of the Punjab Police on May 28 has also accused six others, including a former Akali MLA, for the firing at Kotkapura in Faridkot district that killed two men protesting against cases of desecration on October 14, 2015.
The SIT chargesheet also claimed that Sukhbir Badal arranged a pardon by the Akal Takht Jathedar to Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh Insan in a 2007 blasphemy case.
Sukhbir Singh Badal and his father Parkash Singh Badal had earlier dismissed the SIT probe ordered by the Congress government led by Amarinder Singh.
Dismissing Sukhbir Badal's claim that he was abroad when the police firing took place, the SIT stated that it was "nothing but an attempt to take a defence alibi".
"The investigations suggest that he was aware of each and every development which was taking place in Punjab. However, the office of the chief secretary has been requested to provide complete details," the chargesheet read.
The chargesheet claimed that the police firing at Kotkapura was "totally unprovoked" and the action was the outcome of a "conspiracy" between high profile politicians and senior police officials in connivance with the Dera chief and his followers.
The SIT said the role of the then CM Parkash Singh Badal, Sukhbir Singh Badal, then DGP Sumedh Singh Saini and the then Ferozepur range DIG Amar Singh Chahal was being investigated.
The SIT claimed that the blasphemy case registered against Ram Rahim was cancelled at the behest of Sukhbir Badal on January 25, 2012, five days before the assembly polls, to get the votes of Dera supporters.
According to the SIT, actor Akshay Kumar arranged a meeting between Sukhbir Badal and Ram Rahim to ensure a pardon for the Dera chief from the Akal Takht for allegedly posing as a Sikh guru.
"The investigation conducted by the SIT reveals that a meeting between Sukhbir Badal and dera chief Ram Rahim was arranged by film actor Akshay Kumar on November 21, 2018," the chargesheet said.
"In this meeting, it was decided to ensure the grant of pardon to the Dera head by the Jathedar of the Akal Takht," it added.
Akshay Kumar has dismissed the allegation.
The SIT said 15 cases of sacrilege were registered between October 10 and 31 in 2015.
The SIT filed the chargesheet under various charges, including attempt to murder, against former Kotkapura MLA Mantar Singh Brar, the then Ludhiana police commissioner Paramraj Singh Umranangal, former SSP Charanjit Singh Sharma, the then Additional deputy commissioner of police Ludhiana Paramjit Singh Pannu, the then Deputy Superintendent of police Baljit Singh, the then SHO Kotkapura Gurdeep Singh.