M A I N   N E W S

Daler gets bail in absence of evidence
Tribune News Service

Patiala, December 30
In a complete about-turn, the Patiala police, which had accused pop star Daler Mehndi of being involved in human trafficking, today claimed there was no evidence against him, helping the singer to get bail in the case.

The pop singer, who had been in police custody since December 21, was granted bail today when the public prosecutor told the court that it did not need Daler any longer in the case. The prosecution also claimed that all documents needed from the pop star had been recovered at the latterís instance and it would not have any objection if he was given bail.

Senior Superintendent of Police A.S. Rai, talking to newspersons after the bail was granted, said the police had not been able to find any evidence against the pop start till now. Mr Rai said Daler was not guilty of human trafficking as of now, adding that the police would give a complete clean chit to him only after it arrested three other accused in the case and verified the allegations from them. When questioned about the about-turn in the case as his predecessor Mr Paramraj Singh Umranangal, had claimed that Daler was directly involved in the human trafficking case, Mr Rai said the Patiala police had come to the present conclusion after basing its investigations on documents and no personal vendetta was allowed to come in the way.

The SSP said even though notices under Section 160 of the Cr PC had been served on the complainants, only about 10 of them had presented themselves before the police to reiterate their charges. He said action would be taken against all complainants who were found to have filed false charges against Daler. He said as far as the pop singer was concerned, the police would wait till the filing of the challan in the case. He said if the challan, which was to be filed in a few days, stated that the charges against Daler did not hold, he would be discharged in the case under Section 169.

The police officer also made it clear that the police had not found any evidence against the wives of Daler and his brother, Shamsher Mehndi, despite claims by some of the complainants that they had handed over money to the two women. He also appealed to two other persons wanted in the case, but Bul Mehta and Rakesh Kaushal, alias Rocky, to join investigations in the case.

Earlier, Dalerís lawyer Brijinder Singh Sodhi moved the bail application of Daler in both the human trafficking case as well as another FIR filed against him by a police inspector who had claimed that Dalerís secretary had threatened him. Personal bonds of Rs 50,000 each were furnished in the two cases. Immediately after his release, Daler went to the Dukhniwaran gurdwara, where he offered thanksgiving.

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