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“This is not France, we can make you disappear and no one will ask any questions”

November 29, 2011 | By

Note: Sikh Prisoners Welfare Organization (SPOW) has published following text on it’s website, which is reproduction of interaction between (Bhai) Pal Singh alias Pala and an Indian judge, regarding illegation detention and torture:-

On the 21st July 2010, Bhai Kulwant Singh, son of Saha Singh, was picked up from his home by the Special state Operation Cell (Amritsar) lead by Mal Mandhi’s Officer in Charge, Havinderpal Singh

While in custody, Bhai Pal Singh was severely tortured. As a result of his ordeal the bones in his legs and feet were broken; he lost his hearing in one ear and is suffering from kidney failure.

Judge SH Madhan presided over the case hearing where Bhai Pal Singh, France, a witness to this case, was cross-examined.

A brief of the cross examination regarding Inspector Harvinderpal Singh is given below, (me = Pal Singh):


When did Harvinderpal Singh & DA Shri Randhawa bring you intoAmritsar(jail) and when did you meet Kulwant Singh?


I was previously arrested on 17th July 2010 and released. Then I was re-arrested again on the 22nd July 2010.


What type of condition was Kulwant Singh in?


He was in a very bad state. He was unable to walk and his feet were swollen.


Did they (police) torture you as well?


The moment they brought me into Mal Mandhi, they threw me down and beat me up. I was subjected to electric shocks on many occasions. They pulled my hair and my beard. They also deprived me of sleep. All day the police officers would interrogate me and at night one or two officers would stay with me to ensure that I did not fall asleep. Whenever I did fall asleep, they would beat me with sticks.

On 23rd July 2010 at 09.00am, leading Officer Harvinderpal Singh and his team, took Kulwant Singh out. At 11.00am, the lower ranking officer dragged the unconscious Kulwant Singh back in. Kulwant Singh’s condition was very poor at this stage.


It is written on your FIR, that on 25th July 2010, Kulwant Singh & Gurmukh Singh brought weapons that were in your vehicle from the border and that the police had arrested you from theAmritsar – Jalandhar by-pass.


Kulwant Singh, Gurmukh Singh and I have been in police custody since the 21st July 2010. When the police arrested me from my village, they had taken my vehicle with them. The police officers then sent Kulwant Singh and co, to bring the weapons.


What evidence do you have that they (Police) had arrested you on 22/07/2010?


Firstly, I would like the court to check the location of the officer’s mobile phones.

Secondly, my daughter from Canada, sent emails to the French Embassy in Delhi, stating that I had been arrested on 23/24th July-2010.

Thirdly, there was a news article in the Ajit newspaper that ‘plain clothed police officers had picked Pal Singh from his house on 24th July 2010 and have kept him at an undisclosed location’.

They have shown my arrest to be on 27th July 2010, near Jalandhar bus stand. So if the police had arrested me on 27th July 2010 how would my daughter in Canada know that I was going to be arrested 5 days earlier than what they have stated?!

The village leaders, who were trying to find me, arrived at Mal Mandhi in the morning of the 27th July 2010. This was when Harvinderpal Singh said that the villagers had not done a good thing by putting a writ in the high courts. He then told them to take the writ back and we (police) will not put any case on him (me).

My village leaders had given the writ on the 26th July 2010, stating that the police have taken me from my home. But according to the police, the villagers saw me in the morning of 27th July 2010 and then arrested me in the evening.


When they took you to the first judge, did you tell him that you were tortured?


I said to the first judge, that the police had scared us so bad that if we speak out or told anyone that they had tortured us, they would have killed us.

This officer, who is in front of you, had said that: “we have brought your car so that we can break your hands and your feet and then put you back in the vehicle to make it look like you hit a tree and no one will know or care about you”. The officer then said, “This is not France, we can make you disappear and no one will ask any questions”.

Also when they first presented me to the judge, the police asked for 2 days remand but the judge gave me 3 days. Harvinderpal Singh then said to me “did you see who the judge is? Is it me or the one sitting in the court? We (police) asked for 2 days and we get 3 days remand, usually when police ask for 2 days, the judge gives 1 day”. He then boasted that he is the judge and that he is the one who can save me or kill me.


I will tell them (the police): “Am I the judge or are they the judge?

When they brought Kulwant Singh, did he walk in or was he in a wheelchair?


They had to carry him in and then carry him out.


Did they take you to the doctor?


They only took me twice; once in Manawala and then here inAmritsar. I told the doctor about Kulwant Singh, that he couldn’t walk and that the police were dragging him around. The doctor asked me if there was any bleeding and I told him that the police method of torture did not allow blood to be seen, but you can see my legs and feet are swollen. Also the electrical torture they have used dries up the blood, hence no bleeding. However, the doctor ignored everything I had said and instead wrote down that everything was ok with me.


The police have claimed that you had weapons on the 30th July 2010


They had taken me to my village on the 30th July 2010. In my property I had a mare (horse) which had won first place in Punjab and 4th place in India in a beauty contest. Harvinderpal Singh had said: “We don’t know if we will get the time. Let’s take you to your village and let’s see your mare”.


Is it true, that you have a horse like this?


Yes I do. We reached my village at 6pm. I showed them my horse dancing to them, by then a lot of villagers got together and also the local city press decided to come over.

Havinderpal Singh then asked me to send the villagers back home and that he would release me in two days. Harvinderpal Singh said to the press and the villagers that: “He (me) is innocent and we will release him in two days, he is my uncle and don’t worry I will release him, he is a very good man”.

The next day, the villagers read in the newspaper that was given by Harvinderpal Singh, that they had found weapons on me when they had arrested me. The villagers were shocked and worried about me. The local press present at the time, published an article stating that the police was blatantly lying, because they (police) had taken me empty handed on the 22nd July 2010 and also again on the 30th July 2010. The police though at the time had admitted that I was innocent, later fabricated the story of having found weapons on me.


You are a French citizen; did the French officers come to see you, if so what have they done for you?


They come once a month. They check my health and have informed both the police and jail officers about my health condition but no one has done anything about this. Also when they took me from home on the 22nd July 2010, the police also took, my laptop, my phone, my French passport, my French ID, my driving license, my dual citizenship and some of my FD books from the bank. The French embassy has repeatedly asked the police, about my paperwork but they did get any reply. The Embassy officers are really surprised and really worried because of the police officers attitude towards me.

The police kept asking me, where I took Amrit (Ambrosial Nectar) and who do I believe my Guru is. One day Harvinderpal Singh asked Kulwant Singh:“do you believe in another Guru after Guru Granth Sahib Ji?”

There was a picture of Baba Deep Singh Ji and Kulwant Singh pointed to the picture and said Baba Deep Singh Ji. Harvinderpal Singh then hit Kulwant Singh and said to him, ‘is Baba Deep Singh closer to you or the stick in my hand’? Kulwant Singh felt dreadful that these people saw themselves higher than these Shaheed (Martyred) Singhs.

I told the judge that they had taken me to the DGP of Chadigargh once on the 02nd July 2010 and then on the 03rd August 2010.

The DGP asked me why I did not allow Parkash Badal or his son speak on the stages. What was the reason, he asked? I said that they controlled the SGPC unlawfully. These people use the Guru’s Golaks (Sikh Depositary) money in wrong ways and they have made the corrupt and drug users, all members of the SGPC and whenever they want they make someone the Jathedar (Leader) of Akaal Thakth Sahib and then take him away.

They can also ex-communicate anyone with there own made-up Jathedars (Leaders). I added that the father and son should release their control over Darbar Sahib, Akaal Thakth and the other Thakths (Thrones of Authority). Only then would it be appropriate for them to speak on the stages. This is not just me but anybody who believes in Guru Nanak Dev Ji & the Panth and believes that the members of SGPC should be honest, keep their Rehat (Code of Conduct), have nothing to do with dirty politics and are Pooran Gursikhs.

The Guru’s Golakh should be used for Sikhi parchaar and expanding Sikhi not for dirty politics. Because of these two (Parkash & Sukhbir Badal), the whole of Punjab’s youngsters are druggies and alcoholics.

The judge said that, it is his duty to tell the high court who had tortured Kulwant Singh and that he will now forward this report on.

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