Sunday, April 7, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

DSP, 4 Punjab police officers indicted
Kidnapping of ex-serviceman, three others
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 6
A DSP and four other Punjab police officers have been indicted in a CBI probe into the alleged disapperance of an ex-serviceman, his son and two others from their village near Amritsar in 1992, it is learnt. The whereabouts of the missing persons are still not known.

During the investigations, that concluded this week, CBI sleuths established that Piara Singh, an ex-serviceman, his son, Harphool Singh, nephew Gurdip Singh and a relative, Swaran Singh, had been picked up from their house in Jaobala village on July 23, 1992.

The police team had been led by the then DSP, Tarn Taran, Mr Bhupinderjit Singh. Others indicted by the probe for their alleged involvement include Inspector Surinder Pal Singh, SHO of the Goindwal police station; ASI Teg Bahadur Singh, a member of the CIA staff, Goindwal; Inspector Ram Nath, SHO of the Verowal police station and ASI Nazzar Singh, in charge of a police post in Verowal.

As per the investigation report, a 12-member team had raided “behaks” (small houses on agricultural land) and taken the four missing persons into their custody without disclosing any reason. In their efforts to trace them, members their families also visited the police post at Jaobala and the Verowal police station.

CBI investigations have revealed that they were detained at a police post in Verowal on July 26, where they were seen by a person known to Gurdip Singh. Next day, their family members also met the then SP (Operations), Tarn Taran in this regard.

On August 12, the investigation report states, Kashmir Singh, a relative of Piara Singh, saw the detainees in police custody, where he spoke to them after obtaining permission. Kashmir Singh also reportedly maintained this in his statements made subsequently before the Additional Deputy Commissioner, Tarn Taran, and then before a judicial Magistrate in Chandigarh. Kashmir Singh also stated that the detainees had told him that they were tortured in police custody.

The investigations reveal that they had been detained at the Verowal police post and police station for some days in July, a fact confirmed by Rattan Singh, a cook who had been working at the police station and had served meals to the four detainees. Subsequently, deposing before a Judicial Magistrate in Chandigarh in December, 2001, Rattan identified the detainees from their photographs.

The investigations also reveal that the SP, Internal Vigilance Cell, Punjab, had conducted an inquiry into the matter in 1992-93 forcible abduction of Gurdip Singh, a PSEB employee and the other three.

“The Investigations have established that the aforesaid police personnel, in conspiracy with one another, forcibly kidnapped Piara Singh, Harphool Singh, Gurdip Singh and Swaran Singh and detained them in the police stations and police posts at Goindwal, Pathi, Verowal and Jaobala between from July 23, 1992 to September 18, 1992,” the report concludes.

The indicted policemen have been booked under Sections 120-B, 342 and 364 IPC for conspiracy, kidnapping and wrongful confinement.Back

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