A Punjab Police SIT investigating cases of theft and sacrilege in Faridkot district in 2015 filed its first indictment on Friday against six supporters of Dera Sacha Sauda who were arrested two months ago.
SPS Special Investigation Team leader Parmar, who is also the IGP, Border Range Amritsar, said the challan was brought before a court in Faridkot in the case relating to the desecration of the sacred book in the village of Bargari.
The court has set July 20 as the next hearing date in the case.
Torn pages from Guru Granth Sahib were found scattered around the village of Bargari on October 12, 2015. On the same day, a case under Article 295 (Injuring or defiling a place of worship with the intention of insulting the religion of any class), 295-A (Deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage the religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs), 153-A (Promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion , race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and commit acts detrimental to the maintenance of harmony), 201 (Cause the disappearance of evidence of an offense or give false information to screen the offender ) and 120-B (Criminal association punishment) of the Indian Penal Code was registered at Bajakhana police station on the statement of Bargari gurdwara director, Kulwinder Singh.
SIT arrested six Sirsa-based dera followers on May 16 in three cases: the Bargari case, the theft case of Guru Granth Sahib from the village of Burj Jawahar Singh Wala registered on June 2, 2015 and the manuscript sacrilege case. and derogatory posters in the village of Bargari recorded on September 25, 2015. The arrested defendants, who have now been named in the indictment, have been identified as Sukhjinder Singh, alias Sunny; Shakti Singh; Ranjit Singh, aka Bhola; Baljit Singh; Nishan Singh and Pardeep Singh.
The six against whom the charge was laid
- Sukhjinder Singh aka Sunny Kanda, a resident of Kotkapura who âpreviously ran a dairy business but currently worked as an electrician and plumberâ. According to the SIT investigation, he was the most trusted man of the disciple of dera Mohinder Pal Bittu, the key accused in the cases who was killed in Nabha prison on June 22, 2019 and “is involved in the three cases of sacrilege “. According to the SIT, he had “cut and torn the pages of Guru Granth Sahib and finally scattered those of Bargari”.
- Shakti Singh, a resident of Daggo Romana, “is a carpenter and involved in the three cases of sacrilege.” According to SIT, Shakti âdrove Sunny’s Alto car when Guru Granth Sahib was handed over to Baljit Singh (another accused in the case) in that car; and bought A-4 size papers and a Reynolds marker from Gopal’s stationery in Bargari â.
- Ranjit Singh alias Bhola, a resident of Kotkapura, “works as an insurance agent” in Muktsar and is “also involved in the three cases of sacrilege”. According to SIT, he “was driving the A-Star car when Sunny scattered the pages of Guru Granth Sahib in Bargari”.
- Baljit Singh, a resident of Sikhan Wala, “is a worker” and “also involved in the three cases of sacrilege”. According to the SIT, he “brought about 100 pages from Guru Granth Sahib to Pardeep Singh (another accused in the case) with Ranjit Singh”.
- Nishan Singh, a resident of Kotkapura, “has a furniture business in Kotkapura and is involved in two cases of sacrilege.” According to the SIT investigation, he was “sitting in the back seat of the A-Star car while Sunny dispersed the pages to Bargari”.
- Pardeep Singh, aka Raju Dhodhi, “owns a dairy near his house and has been involved in an incident of sacrilege.” Arrested in the Bargari case, Pardeep, according to the SIT, was “given 100 pages of Guru Granth Sahib to scatter on Hari Nau Road Kotkapura.” He was however afraid because of the dharna held by the local population at the main chowk of Kotkapura and he got rid of the holy pages in the canal near the village of Bahman Wala â.
The Bargari case
The Bargari case was transferred to the CBI for investigation on November 2, 2015. On September 6, 2018, the government of Punjab notified to resume the sacrilege cases from the CBI. The CBI had submitted a joint closing report on July 4, 2019 in all three cases.
The Punjab Police SIT, headed by Parmar, was formed on instructions from the Punjab and Haryana High Court in January this year. In February, the CBI on instructions from the High Court handed over documents and records related to the 2015 incidents to the Punjab Police SIT.