Register murder case: HC tells Punjab Police

Murder

Holding the investigation done by the Punjab Police into the mysterious death of a student of Thapar University as "arbitrary, illegal" and "mala fide", the Punjab and Haryana High Court has directed Punjab Police to register a case of murder.

While initial "investigation" done by Rajpura Police had claimed that Gagandeep (21) had died in an accident, a subsequent inquiry done by Deputy Inspector General, Kunwar Vijay Pratap Singh, had opined that Gagandeep was murdered. Despite the scathing report, Punjab Police had refused to accept the report and constituted an SIT which dismissed it to be a case of accident.

Shocked at the tactics adopted by the Punjab Police to "nullify the findings" of its own officer, "without any legal basis", the court has now ordered a probe — to be completed in three months — to fasten responsibility on "errant" police officers, who shielded murderers and find out why the the DIG's report (dated December 27, 2011) was not accepted by Punjab.

The new probe will be conducted under the supervision the Patiala Senior Superintendent of Police. Officer found guilty in the new probe will have to pay a fine Rs 50,000. The penalty will be paid, as compensation, to Gurbax Singh Bains, a local lawyer whose son was "murdered" on September 28, 2010 near Rajpura Patiala.

Aggrieved against registration of a case of rash and negligent driving, Bains had petitioned the High Court demanding a CBI probe. Bains had alleged that personal enmity between his son and the then SDM's son was the motive behind the "murder".

Raising eyebrows over the alleged involvement of the son of a former Sub Divisional Magistrate (SDM), Patiala, the High Court has held that the investigation (by Rajpura Police) smacks of "mala fide" at the instance of the said SDM.

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