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Chandigarh

Posted at: Aug 11, 2018, 2:00 AM; last updated: Aug 11, 2018, 10:23 AM (IST)

Deshraj gets 3-year jail

Judge refers to Munshi Premchand’s Namak ka Daroga The special CBI court referred to Munshi Premchand’s short story, “Namak ka Daroga”. The special CBI court Judge, Gagangeet Kaur, observed that the story written in the early 20th century seemed more relevant now “when corruption has become a dreaded disease like cancer”.

Accept God’s plan, will challenge order: Deshraj

  • After his quantum of sentence was announced, Deshraj had a smile on his face. However, soon after, his face turned red and tears rolled down his cheeks. The smile was again back and he kept strolling in the corridor outside while smoking a cigarette time and again. Speaking to Chandigarh Tribune, he said, “I accept God’s plan, but I know this case well and will challenge the order.” His counsel Vishal Garg Narwana was relieved that Deshraj was not taken into custody and said he was hopeful of getting an acquittal from the High Court.

Ishrat S Banwait

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10

While sentencing IPS officer and former UT SP (City) Deshraj Singh to three-year jail in a six-year-old graft case, the special CBI court here referred to Munshi Premchand’s short story, “Namak ka Daroga”. The special CBI court Judge, Gagangeet Kaur, observed that the story written in the early 20th century seemed more relevant now “when corruption has become a dreaded disease like cancer”.

Deshraj was directed to pay a fine of Rs 1 lakh by the court and let off on bail. Deshraj, a 2008-batch IPS officer, was caught by the CBI in 2012 while taking a bribe of Rs 1 lakh from the then SHO of the Sector 26 police station, Anokh Singh. The amount was part of the Rs 2-lakh bribe that Deshraj had demanded for “taking care” of an inquiry against Anokh, which he had himself initiated.

The order starts off by saying that corruption and bribery among public servants are one of the most important categories of economic offences, which are known as white collar crimes “as these are committed by highly qualified and ranked” persons through business magnates, corporate persons, technical experts or public servants.

The case has been stated to be of unique nature as the complainant himself is a public servant and allegations levelled by him were against his own senior officer. The defence plea of being allured by the complainant and then being falsely implicated “reminds us of the story Namak ka Daroga”, the order states. 

While saying that the present time demands “strong character among police officers”, the judgment cites the example of the protagonist of Munshi Premchand story. The ‘daroga’ by not accepting a bribe “sets an example of honesty for a public servant”. The order adds that relevancy of the story can be gauged from the fact that the story is still part of the school syllabus for character building. 

Sentence decided keeping in mind kids’ medical condition

The order states that there are no mitigating circumstances to award the minimum sentence in the case. However, the health condition of his two children as well as his wife have to be kept in mind; hence the maximum punishment, as demanded by the CBI, can also not be awarded.

Alleging torture by Deshraj, couple reaches court

Claiming false implication by Deshraj in a civil case relating to a property dispute among two brothers, a couple reached the court to see “justice being delivered”. Amarjeet Singh and his wife Charanjeet Singh told Chandigarh Tribune that in 2012, Deshraj started an inquiry against them in a rape case. Later, the couple and their son were acquitted in the matter and the complainant is facing purgery charges. “Deshraj had asked me to give back the plot and to get the rape case withdrawn,” said Amarjeet.

How the case progressed

October 18, 2012: CBI lays trap, arrests Deshraj while taking a bribe of Rs 1 lakh.

December 12, 2012: Deshraj gets bail. 

July 5, 2013: CBI receives prosecution sanction from the Union Home Ministry to try Deshraj.

July 7, 2013: CBI files chargesheet.

October 14, 2013: Charges framed

February 14, 2014: Complainant Anokh Singh testifies against Deshraj

August 8, 2018: Deshraj held guilty by court.

August 10: Deshraj sentenced to three-year imprisonment.

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