SEDITION CHARGES: Surinder Singh, Daljit Singh, and Kulbir Singh
AMRITSAR SAHIB (KP) - Various human rights organizations expressed outrage regarding the dubious police tactics used to frame several Sikh activists who were arrested under fabricated charges last week under the guise on ‘national security’.
The Punjab Human Rights Organization, Sikh for Justice (USA), Ensaaf (USA), Khalsa Human Rights (UK) , Khalra Mission Committee, International Human Rights Organization, along with Dal Khalsa, Akali Dal Amritsar and Panch Pardhani, blasted the Punjab Police’s resent arrests of Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) member Kulbir Singh Barapind, Akali Dal Panch Pardhani former president Daljit Singh Bittu, and Gurmat Parchar Sewa Lehar member, Surinder Singh Thikriwal under various bogus charges such as sedations, waging was against the state, and possession of illegal firearms and explosives.
The organizations have put up a united front and intend to approach the Punjab and Haryana High Court and Union Home Department over the arrests. The spokespersons for the organizations alleged that the police were acting on the behest of the Akali government to suppress political opposition.
SGPC member, Kulbir Singh Barapind, was arrested by Nawashahr district police from his house in Barapind village, Daljit Singh Bittu was arrested by the Ludhiana police and Surinder Singh from his native town of Thikriwal near Barnala.
Barapind's counsel, Kashmir Singh Malhi, has filed a plea seeking a examination by a medical board as Kulbir Singh Barapind claimed that he was subjected to brutal torture methods and was given electric shocks by the police interrogators.
The police originally indicated that the arrests were just a preventive detention in the wake of Bharat Bandh (national strike) call made by various groups opposed to the ruling central government of the Congress Party. Interestingly, neither of these individuals were connected to the Bandh, and bizarrely no member of the Akali Dal – BJP party were arrested who were directly involved in the strike.
No sooner, the justifications behind the arrests were changed to various sedation and weapons possession charges. The police first alleged that Kulbir Singh was in possession of fresh explosives, but failing to substantiate the allegations linked him to a four month old Nawashar RDX case involving
The Superintendent of Police Rajinder Singh conformed that no explosives were found from Barapind’s home, and that charges under the Explosives Act would be dropped. The Supt. Rajinder Singhclaimed that Barapind was planning to indulge in “militant” activity and wage war against the state.
Gurmat Parchar Sewa Lehar member, Surinder Singh Thikriwal was charged for being possession of a country-made pistol along with various sedation charges.
Various media reports have also stated that Police charged Kulbir Singh Barapind and Daljit Singh Bittu for having links with members of Babbar Khalsa International.