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Damp walls, 4 men, only 1 fan, 1 toilet...
Jupinderjit Singh/Tribune News Service

B.I.S. ChahalLudhiana, June 11
A 12 x 10 room, damp walls, a tattered mat on the floor to sleep on, a pedestal fan kept outside the bars and an Indian style toilet seat in a corner of the room to be used by four inmates in full view of each other. This is the lock up at the Sadar police station where ex-media adviser B.I.S. Chahal spent his first night in custody.

The man, whose writ ran in the state and was accustomed to staying at best of the hotels and government accommodation in the past five years stayed in the room in great discomfort. A doctor had to be summoned near midnight when he complained of chest pain and palpitation.

The doctor did not recommend hospitalisation, meaning Chahal and others had to spend the night and the entire next day in the dingy room only. While the day temperature touched a scorching 47 degrees, the night hours were not cool either causing much sweating and discomfort. There was no respite from the mosquitoes also.

Chahal ate two chappatis and a bowl of daal served usually to all inmates in police stations. After the reluctant dinner, he insisted on eating corn-flakes in the morning, arguing he always had this breakfast. He had to do with bread slices as per the jail manual.

Along with him, Jagdish Singh, whose daughter is married to Chahal’s son, Jagdish’s father Kartar Singh Grewal, ex-sarpanch of Daad village, and other relatives Harbhajan Singh and Harjinder Singh also spent the night in the same barrack.

Chahal was helped in the morning by a constable in tying his turban. He wore the same clothes he was wearing since 5 pm yesterday when he was arrested.

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