Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Tuesday said a special investigation team of the Punjab Police will conduct a time-bound investigation into the sacrilege incident in Bargari and firing incidents in Behbal Kalan and Kotkapura, PTI reported.
In October 2015, two people were killed and several injured in police firing when they were protesting against a series of incidents of desecration of the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy text of the Sikhs. The first incident of desecration was reported from Bargari in Faridkot district. The Central Bureau of Investigation was probing three sacrilege cases including theft of a ‘bir’ (copy of Guru Granth Sahib) from Burj Jawahar Singh Wala village in Kotkapura.
Singh said his government will take immediate action as per the findings and recommendations of the special investigation team. The announcement came after the House unanimously passed a resolution, by voice vote, to withdraw investigations by the CBI.
During an eight-hour long debate in the state Assembly on the Justice Ranjit Singh Commission report into sacrilege cases, leaders cutting across party lines sought action against all those guilty or “found involved” in the crime, The Pioneer reported. The report has named former Punjab Chief Minister and Shiromani Akali Dal leader Parkash Singh Badal in a supplementary report for his “apparent involvement” in police action against anti-sacrilege protestors at Kotkapura.
Shiromani Akali Dal President Sukhbir Singh Badal said by handing over the sacrilege cases to the Punjab Police, the chief minister has admitted that he failed to “achieve his objectives” against them through the commission and would now misuse police.
Singh said the Congress had made an election promise to bring the truth of the Bargari sacrilege case and the subsequent firing incidents to the people of Punjab.
The Punjab Assembly on Tuesday also passed the Indian Penal Code (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2017, and the Code of Criminal Procedure (Punjab Amendment) Bill that make desecration of religious texts punishable with life imprisonment.