JALANDHAR – As arrest of militant turned police cat turned drug peddler Sukhwinder Singh Sukhi by Delhi police has put a question mark on the working and methods of Punjab police, this also exposes the convenient forgetting of claims and demands by top politicians of the state.
After lid on Sukhi’s identity was blown in January 2006 Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, then leader of opposition, had demanded on the floor of Punjab assembly in February 2006 disclosure of names of 300 such militant turned police cats, rehabilitated by Punjab police brass. He had even demanded a CBI probe in Sukhi case. Badal had even argued that it should be disclosed that who the real persons were killed in place of these 300 persons as latter’s encounters were faked. However his demands were rejected by then Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh.
Then before the assembly election of 2007 Badal raised bogey of threat to peace in the state and alleged that Congress through then Punjab DGP S S Virk could vitiate the atmosphere of the state by using the “cats” like Sukhi.
However after Badal came to power in February 2007 and following initial action against Sukhi in September 2007 after arrest of Virk by Vigilance Bureau the government and police relegated the issue to back burner.
“We had demanded from Badal when he became CM that identities of these fellows be disclosed. Either these people were wrongly booked originally by the police or later they were saved illegally by the establishment. What law provides to shield a criminal,” said Gurtej Singh, a former IAS officer and co-convener of Coordination Committee on Disappearances in Punjab (CCDP) which was once led by noted rights activist late Ram Narayan Kumar. “But Badal did not do what he demanded from Congress government after coming to power,” he said.