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Balwinder Singh Sekhon, the ex-DSP behind drugs case controversy

Was dismissed from Punjab Police

Balwinder Singh Sekhon, the ex-DSP behind drugs case controversy

A decade after the Punjab and Haryana High Court took suo motu cognisance of the drug menace in Punjab, the case has taken a startling turn with “malicious, libelous and derogatory videos” on judicial proceedings going viral. - File photo



Tribune News Service

Saurabh Malik

Chandigarh, February 21

A decade after the Punjab and Haryana High Court took suo motu cognisance of the drug menace in Punjab, the case has taken a startling turn with “malicious, libelous and derogatory videos” on judicial proceedings going viral.

Murmurs against the judiciary by discontented litigants are not uncommon everywhere. But it has never been so blatant, compelling a Division Bench to observe the persons involved “apparently have willingly taken on the High Court in order to achieve their personal ends for reasons best known to them”.

At heart of the controversy is dismissed police official Balwinder Singh Sekhon, ordered to be arrested by the Division Bench on February 20. A Deputy Superintendent of Police, Sekhon was dismissed from service during then DGP Dinkar Gupta’s tenure.

His dismissal was on the grounds that “he had made unpleasant remarks against the government through the social media while being a member of the disciplined force”. Available information suggests some of the videos in circulation are directed not only against the judiciary, but also Gupta and another senior police officer.

It all started during the hearing of the drugs case. The Bench observed it came to notice that Sekhon had been circulating malicious, libelous and derogatory videos. The Bench said it was, in fact, informed about circulation of a large number of videos prior to the listing of contentious matters. The Bench also observed that a video was circulated on January 26 prior to the court proceedings the next day, “referring to more than 10 Judges of this Court against whom scandalous allegations had been levelled and one Judge of the Supreme Court”.

As such, the Bench on February 15 issued notice of criminal contempt. At that point of time, Pardeep Sharma –– apparently part of several press conferences and featuring along with Sekhon –– appeared before the Bench to defend him. Sharma was informed that he was a non-entity and could file an application to intervene, if he wished. Sharma was marshalled out with the police help after he continued to insist on being heard.

The matter did not stop there. Apparently, both the respondents chose to air their views in open at the High Court entrance and launched “a vicious tirade” on the proceedings.

The Bench in its order observed: “He (Sharma) disparagedly remarked about one of us and the fact that his father was also a Chief Justice and he also did not have the guts to open the reports. Sekhon then named two senior police officials, due to which, the reports had not been opened and he claimed to be a whistle-blower and that the Bench would wet its pants if the envelopes were opened. It was further commented that the Judges had been leashed by a certain set of people”.

The two, along with a channel reporter, the next day uploaded another video in an “effort to tarnish the reputation of this Court”. The Bench then directed Ludhiana Commissioner of Police to ensure the arrest of the two.

Was dismissed from Punjab Police

At heart of the controversy is dismissed DSP Balwinder Singh Sekhon, ordered to be arrested by the Division Bench on February 20. Sekhon was dismissed from service during then DGP Dinkar Gupta's tenure on the grounds that “he had made unpleasant remarks against the government through the social media while being a member of the disciplined force”.

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