Police lathi charge in Khanpur
DSP’s explanation sought
Tribune News Service
Directing Ropar Senior Superintendent of Police and other police officers to file affidavits within three days explaining the “whole situation” in Khanpur lathi charge case, Mr Justice S.S. Nijjar of the Punjab and Haryana High Court today observed that “it would be in the interest of all concerned if status quo was maintained regarding possession as well as the user of the land in dispute”.
Pronouncing the orders in the open court, Mr Justice Nijjar also directed the police officials “visible in the photograph (in The Tribune) attached with the petition to explain their behaviour by way of affidavits”, adding that since the allegations in the petition were against a sitting District and Sessions Judge, “it would be appropriate if the matter was monitored by the high court itself”.
In his detailed order, Mr Justice Nijjar observed: “In one of the statements recorded by the warrant officer appointed by the court, it is categorically stated by Jaswant Singh that respondents Harbhajan Singh Shergill, Baldev Singh Kang and District and Sessions Judge B.C. Rajput are intending to build a factory on the land in dispute. It is also alleged that these persons are wanting to take forcible possession of the disputed land....”
The Judge further observed: “In another statement, Ms Kamaljit Kaur has given a graphic description of the misbehaviour of the police. She has also stated that the newspaper photograph of the woman being beaten up after she had fallen on the ground was her. She has also stated that the SHO is seen pulling her daughter’s hair.... In order to obtain a clear picture, it is necessary to hear certain respondents”.
It may be recalled that the president of Dr Ambedkar Schedule Caste and Schedule Tribe Advocate Association T. C. Tanwar had alleged that certain persons were being illegally detained by SHO Jasdev Singh and two others at the instance of two respondents who were “big landlords needing the land occupied by the families of the alleged detainees for constructing a huge factory”.