July 8, 2020 | By Sikh Siyasat Bureau
A Special Investigation Team (SIT), led by DIG Ranbir Singh Khatra, recently said that it was in the knowledge of Dera Sauda Sirsa (DSS) hierarchy that dera followers were involved in beadbi of Guru Granth Sahib at Buraj Jawahar Singh Wala, Bargari, Gurusar Jalal and Malke villages in 2015.
Gurmeet Ram Rahim Named in Burj Jawahar Singh Wala Case:
Ranbir Singh Khatra said that the SIT has named DSS chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim in Buraj Jawahar Singh Wala case.
Notably, dera head is undergoing imprisonment at Rohtak jail Sunarian in Haryana after his conviction by a CBI court in two rape cases.
It is pertinent to mention here that Burj Jawahar Singh Wala case is not the first case in which DSS chief is named by the Punjab police. He was earlier named by the state police in 2007 ‘Salabatpura case’.
In his address to media person on 6 July 2020, SIT chief Ranbir Singh Khatra himself pointed that the beadbi cases were part of series of event that had began with Gurmeet Ram Rahim’s 2007 activity at Salabatpura based dera.
During a function held at Salabatpura (Bathinda) based branch of Dera Sauda Sirsa in 2007, Gurmeet Ram Rahim had personified himself as tenth Sikh Guru, Guru Gobind Singh Ji.
He had tried to copy-act historic event of Khalsa Sajna.
As personification of Sikh Gurus is strictly prohibited in Sikhi, dera head’s activities had outraged the global Sikh Sangat and there were wide-spread protests against him and his dera.
As protests against Gurmeet Ram Rahim’s blasphemous act grew stronger, under directions from Punjab government led by Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) leaders Parkash Singh Badal and his son Sukhbir Singh Badal, the Punjab police registered the complaint of Rajinder Singh Sidhu against Gurmeet Ram Rahim.
On the basis of Rajinder Singh Sidhu’s complaint a case against Dera Sauda Sirsa (DSS) chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim at Police station Kotwali (Bathinda) under FIR number 262, dated 20th of May, 2007 under section 295-A, 298 and 153-A of Indian Penal Code (IPC).
As the government was not interested in proceeding against Dera Sauda Sirsa (DSS) chief in this case, there was was no significant progress in the investigation.
Surprisingly, the Punjab police had sought permissions of the accused dera head to meet and question him.
Rajinder Singh Sidhu, who was initial complainant in this case was made to retract from him complaint. Notably, he was a local leader of the then ruling party Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal).
After few years of registration of the case, the Punjab police field a closure report maintaining that it did not get any information or evidence about the Salabatpura incident.
Meanwhile, in 2011 a Sikh lawyer, Jaspal Singh Manjhpur and a political activist Baba Hardeep Singh Mehraj, moved the court and were successful in getting themselves listed as co-complainants in this case.
They insisted on pursuing the case despite police’s closure report. They successfully convinced the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) that there was sufficient evidence against Gurmeet Ram Rahim in this case.
Because of efforts of Advocate Jaspal Singh Manjhpur and his co-complainant the case survived for few more years and the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) Raman Kumar issued summons against Dera Sauda chief.
But CJM Raman Kumar’s order was challenged by Dera Sauda head in higher court.
The court of a District Sessions Judge Tejwinder Singh on 7 August 2014 dismissed the Salabatpura case against Gurmeet Ram Rahim.
The Court accepted the closure report of Punjab police that was initially rejected by the CJM’s court.
The shallow investigations by the Punjab police were prime reason for dismissal.
The Punjab police snubbed the case to serve Punjab government’s political interests, as it was believed that such concessions might convince Dera management to extend support to SAD (Badal) in various elections.
Talking about present status of the case, Advocate Jaspal Singh Manjhpur told Sikh Siyasat News (SSN) that Salabatpura case was left behind by the Punjab police and the Punjab government after dismissal by the Sessions Court. “But”, he added, “we had challenged the Sessions Court’s decision in the Punjab and Haryana High Court”.
“We have field an appeal in the HC challenging Sessions court’s dismissal order and the case is pending before the high court awaiting hearing”, he added.
Advocate Jaspal Singh Manjhpur said that Advocate Navkiran Singh is following the case as their counsel in the High Court.
The experience of Salabatpura case shows that naming of Dera Sauda Sirsa (DSS) is not enough and much would depend on police investigations and the political will of the present Punjab government.
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Related Topics: Advocate Navkiran Singh, Anti-Sikh Deras, Baba Hardeep Singh Mehraj, Bargari Beadbi Case, Capt. Amarinder Singh, Congress Government in Punjab 2017-2022, Dera Sauda Sirsa, Gurmeet Ram Rahim, Gurusar Jalal Beadbi Incident, Jaspal Singh Manjhpur (Advocate), Malke (Moga) Beadbi Incident, Parkash Singh Badal, Punjab Police, Punjab Politics, Ranbir Singh Khattra, Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal), SIT on Bargari Beadbi Case and Behbal Kalan Police Firing, Sukhbir Badal, Sukhbir Singh Badal, ਸ਼੍ਰੋਮਣੀ ਅਕਾਲੀ ਦਲ (ਬਾਦਲ) Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal)