The series of desecration episodes of Guru Granth Sahib rocked the nation in 2015. This heinous act was criticized around the nation and people took the roads to demonstrate against the wrongdoing in Kotkapura (Faridkot District) and Behbal Kalan (Village in Kotkapura Tehsil). not only hurt the religious sentiments in India but across the globe.
Alas, there were causalities both in Kotkapura and Behbal Kalan which is sad. However, based on uncertainty and political pressure, Punjab police personnel were arrested namely – IG Paramraj Singh Umranangal, then Kotkapura city station house officer Sub-Inspector Gurdeep Singh, former Moga Senior Superintendent of Police Charanjit Singh Sharma, then Kotkapura Deputy Superintendent of Police (now SP) Baljit Singh, then Ludhiana Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police Paramjit Singh Pannu. SIT names three more cops in Umranangal Case, files challan against six.
The probing team also found both Gurdeep Singh Pandher and Baljit Singh guilty of tampering with the evidence and fabrication of the records.
Faridkot Court Dismisses Anticipatory Bail of SAD Ex MLA Mantar Brar
Ex-Member of Legislative Assembly, Mantar Singh Brar accused of kotkapura firing (one of the first politicians to be arrested) was arrested with charges of attempt to murder and criminal conspiracy in the kotkapura firing incident. It was found by the court that Mr. Brar made 157 calls to some of the leading police officials and politicians on the night of October 13-14, 2015.
Special Investigation Team also added that Mr. Brar was not cooperative when he was investigated his involvement in the case. This made the probing team equivocal and after further interrogation, Mr. Mantar Singh was found making contradictory statements about his presence at ground zero. What is controversial is that he was having all the details about what was going to happen and about the increasing number of protesters in Kotkapura.
Justice Ranjit Singh Commission Report Made Part of Chargesheet in Kotkapura Case
The investigation team has done probe against one of the prominent leaders of a leading political party of Punjab. His Mumbai visit, in September 2015, is also under scanner. It was alleged that the leader Ram Rahim (chief of Dera Sacha Sauda) had a meeting with the politician. On the recommendations of The Ranjit Singh Commission report, a police firing case was registered on August 7, 2018 under various sections 307 (attempt to murder), 323 (causing hurt), 341 (wrongful restraint), of the Indian Penal Code and sections of the Arms Act against unidentified cops.
Later, the investigation team also added further sections including – 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence or giving false information) and 218 (public servant framing incorrect record).
The investigation agency, probing 2015 sacrilege and police firing incidents, made The Ranjit Singh Commission a part of their chargesheet in Kotkapura firing case. The fresh Sacrilege Case SIT Chargesheet was presented before Harpal Singh (District and Sessions Judge) and its copies were also provided to both IG Umranangal and Mantar Singh Brar. The supplementary chargesheet, 700-page, contained call details of some of the top officials as additional evidence.
Paramraj Singh Umranangal Sacrilege Case – Twist in the Tale
Police have a 40-minute audio clip of the conversation between one of the brothers and the foreign aide. Special Investigation Team under IPS Sahota (Additional Director General of Police) concluded that both the accused became soft targets of the anti-national elements owing to greed and the ambition of becoming rich overnight.
Paramraj Singh Umranangal was doing his duty. He discussed the whole situation with his immediate seniors and what should be done to control the mob. No police official can take a personal decision without informing or discussing the case with his/her immediate seniors. Moreover, he has no personal conflict with the protesters.
Since the number of protesters outnumbered the policemen present at ground zero, more police force was called from the nearest locations and was deployed at the scene. The ground zero was inundated with men in Khaki and it is still unclear as who fired. It is still unclear whether the firing orders were given by a particular police officer or it was an accident.
Mohinder Pal Bittu Key Accused in Bargari Sacrilege Case Murdered in Patiala
Giving the whole case a political angle, Congress party disavowed all the reports submitted by the committees made by the then ruling party. The party initiated the investigation using their officials and sources as they wanted to cash-in the whole situation and want to make their voting bank stronger.
Though Mohinder Pal Singh Bittu, one of the members of Dera Sacha Sauda, is not anymore but his confession, in front of the judicial magistrate of Moga under section 164 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, as being the mastermind can be considered and should play an important role in this high profile case. Mohinder Pal Bittu, main accused in bargari sacrilege case killed in nabha jail. The probing team also arrested two brothers, hailing from Panjgrain Khurd village in Faridkot, who were getting aids from Australia to carry out the whole sacrilege act and demonstrations.
The demise of Bittu, while in the custody, is both questionable and sad. Police officials knew that he was the main culprit as he had confessed the wrongdoing. Ideally, being the main accused, the police should have arranged extra protection for him and should have kept a watchful eye on his every movement. Indeed, this is a major let down from the police end.
IG PS Umranangal Case is Only Being Dragged to Delayed Justice
Special Investigation Team has also arrested four followers of Dera Sacha Sauda from Palampur district in Himachal Pradesh in connection with sacrilege case in 2015. As per the probing team, they are alleged to be the main accused in the sacrilege case.
At this stage, how things have turned out, it can be said that the sacrilege case was a crime committed with the approval of the Dera Sacha Sauda secretary. This was done to take political benefits. Blaming a cop is irrational and jumping to a conclusion based on incomplete facts is baseless.
The whole case has come to a point where things are being made more and more convoluted. Since the case has the involvement of some of the leading politicians and top police officials, everybody is busy playing a safe game and want to save their respective positions. Hence, the case is only being dragged, resulting in delayed justice.