Chandigarh, June 26, 2021 (Yes Punjab News)
The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) today said Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi, Sunil Jakhar and Navjot Sidhu had replaced the three-member Special Investigation Team (SIT) and had already indicted former chief minister Parkash Singh Badal and SAD President Sukhbir Singh Badal in the Kotkapura firing case.
It said the Kotkapura incident was probably the only incident in the world in which the SIT wanted to know who ordered the firing after the relevant competent authority – the SDM had already declared that he had ordered it. “It’s like the SIT asking the SDM not to disclose that he had ordered the firing because it wanted to blame the Badal family for the same”.
Addressing a press conference here, senior SAD leaders Balwinder Singh Bhundur, Prof Prem Singh Chandumajra, Maheshinder Singh Grewal and Dr Daljit Singh Cheema said “it is clear that the SIT has become a puppet in the hands of the Gandhi family which is controlling it through remote control from 10 Janpath”. They said though it was a tall order, but if the SIT wanted to regain its credibility it should probe the role of Sunil Jakhar, Navjot Sidhu and Rahul Gandhi in hatching the conspiracy to frame the senior SAD leadership.
The leaders said it was shocking that the PPCC chief had recently stated that he had explained the entire issue to Rahul Gandhi and that the latter had understood the same and told chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh to frame Mr Parkash Singh Badal and Mr Sukhbir Singh Badal in the case. They said Navjot Sidhu had also goaded the SIT to do the same in a statement today. The leaders said while Jakhar and Sidhu had committed contempt of court, charges should be pressed against Rahul Gandhi for becoming an abettor to an illegal act.
The SAD leaders, who were accompanied by the party’s core committee members, said they also wanted the SIT to examine the role of the Congress and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in the incidents which led to the cases of sacrilege in 2015 as well as subsequent incidents. They also demanded that a case should be registered against former IG Kunwar Vijay Pratap Singh for forging documents in a bid to implicate the Badal family in the Kotkapura firing case.
Terming the entire incident as an exercise in political vendetta, Mr Maheshinder Grewal said the SIT should not allow itself to be used by the Gandhi family as Indira Gandhi had done earlier to attack Sikh institutions and their leaders. “The SIT has also eroded its credibility by associating retired officials like former Director, Prosecution Vijay Singla in the probe”.
Stating that the new SIT was like an old wine in a new bottle, the SAD leaders said “it is not likely to make any headway in the case as its agenda is to keep the pot boiling and not to solve anything”. They advocated that the probe should be handed over to the Supreme Court which should supervise the entire investigation.
The senior leaders including Mr Bhundar and Prof Chandumajra said the Gandhi family was indulging in a witch hunt by targeting the Badal family with the express desire to weaken the SAD and the Sikh leadership in Punjab.
They said while on the one hand the government wanted to defame the SAD, it was also using the case to quell dissidence in the party. “In doing so it has created a new precedent by questioning a former CM and former Deputy CM in a case involving a local law and order situation”.
The SAD leadership also made it clear that the high court had recently while throwing out the malicious inquiry of former IG Kunwar Vijay Pratap stated that a chief minister had full right to telephone government functionaries to review a law and order situation. “When the new SIT starts questioning SAD leaders about the calls made to review the law the order situation in Kotkapura it is committing contempt of court and interfering in the high court order”.
Dr Daljit Cheema also brought it on record that while the Congress government was pursuing the Kotkapura firing case as it felt it had an handle to implicate the Badal family in the same, it was not taking interest in pursuing the Bargari sacrilege case or the Behbal Kalan police firing case in which two persons had been killed.
He demanded the government to hold a day to day trial in the Bargari case to bring anyone guilty of this heinous crime to book. He said similarly the Behbal Kalan police firing case probe should also be speeded up.