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Farmers firm on FIR, Punjab cops reluctant

Farmers firm on FIR, Punjab cops reluctant

Barricades being removed from Tikri-Bahadurgarh border. Sumit Tharan



Tribune News Service

Aman Sood

Patiala, February 24

The stalemate between agitating farmers and the Punjab Government has led to a delay in the post-mortem of 22-year-old farmer Shubhkaran Singh, who allegedly died in police firing four days ago. Farmers have demanded an FIR against erring cops, but Punjab Police are reluctant as they claimed the incident took place inside Haryana’s territory.

Sources said despite many rounds of meetings between agitating farmers and Punjab cops, an FIR had not been registered. “There are videos of the incident and cops from Haryana have already told us the death took place under the jurisdiction of the Jind police. Therefore, they will conduct a probe into the matter,” police officials said.

A senior IPS officer confirmed that two days back, a DSP and the investigating officer from Haryana had reached Patiala to record the statement of Shubhkaran’s family. “However, as tempers were running high, they were forced to return. But they clearly told us that according to rules, the FIR would be registered by them as the incident took place 700-900 metres inside Haryana’s territory. There is nothing much we can do. The farmers are not willing to listen and so there is a deadlock,” he said. Senior leader of Kisan Mazdoor Morcha, Sarwan Singh Pandher said they had rejected Punjab government’s offer of Rs 1 crore and job for a family member of the victim till their primary demand of an FIR was met. Meanwhile, insiders said while the farmers were given an option on February 21 that the Centre was ready for another round of talks, these could not be held after Shubhkaran’s death.

“Once we get the police nod, we will conduct the autopsy,” said doctors at the Government Rajindra Hospital, Patiala.

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