Posted by: Singh Is King | Saturday, August 4, 2007

Fake Encounters – Probe Panel Gets Another Case

FAKE ENCOUNTERS
Probe panel gets another case 

Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

The scope of the fact-finding panel set up by the Punjab police to go into allegations of fake encounters has been expanded and now one more case has been handed over to the panel for probe.

The panel is already looking into three such cases in which the Punjab police claimed to have killed a militant only to find later that the real person re-surfaced years after the “encounter”. And any more such case could also be handed over to it for probe.

Well-placed sources in the Punjab police said today the fact-finding panel, headed by additional director-general of police J.P. Birdi, had been asked to probe the fake encounter in which Jagraon-based militant Jagdish Singh Deesha was reported to have been killed. Deesha is alive and at present lodged in Nabha jail meaning thereby that somebody else had been killed and shown as Deesha.
The Birdi panel is also probing the encounters in which it was claimed that Gurnam Singh Bandala, Gurcharan Singh Giani, younger brother of Khalistan Commando Force (KCF) supremo Surjit Singh Painta, and Jaspal Singh Bhatti were killed. All three are alive and the panel is closing in on families whose sons were “bumped-off” to show the elimination of these three.

Close on the heels comes the case of Deesha. In the past during his term in jail he told an inspecting team of the court that he was alive while the Punjab police had shown him as killed way back in 1993. Deesah was allegedly involved in about 10 incidents during the days of militancy.

An in-house preliminary inquiry by the police followed and it was found that Deesha’s claims made before the inspecting team were correct. The court asked for the records of his case which were reportedly not traceable in the police headquarters here.

DGP N.P.S. Aulakh has now handed over the case to Birdi, who has himself served long on field postings during the days of terrorism. A dedicated team of officials is posted with him to assist in the probe.

Meanwhile, the panel is about to submit its report of the first three cases and records are being collected from various courts and hospitals in the state, the sources added. The three militants re-surfaced some time early this year and a probe was started. Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal is keen that the matter is settled once and for all with compensation to the families and action against the erring cops.

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