HC seeks report on action against ‘delinquent’ officers

Jaswinder Singh Baidwan

Akhran da mureed
Staff member
About seven months after the shootout in Bathinda jail left two inmates injured, the State of Punjab is in the line of fire. The Punjab and Haryana High Court has asked for action taken report against the delinquent officers.
The State found itself facing blazing guns on the issue of pistol’s possession with an inmate after he moved the high court for bail in the matter. The Bench of Justice Jitendra Chauhan was told that the petitioner-accused Kulbir Singh was booked in an FIR registered at the Bathinda Civil Lines Police Station for attempt to murder and other offences on April 16 under Sections 307, 323, 336, 353, 186, 506, 436, 148, 149, 120-B of the IPC, besides Section 25 of the Arms Act and Section 540 of the Jail Manual Act.
Appearing before the Bench, his counsel GS Sidhu contended the co-accused in the case had already been given bail by the trial court. Besides this, the petitioner was in custody since April 18. The court was also told that the petitioner was out on bail in 12 out of 13 FIRs. The State counsel, however, opposed the bail plea.
Taking up the matter, Justice Chauhan on a previous date of hearing directed the State to explain “as to how the pistol used in the crime came into the possession of the petitioner”.
Responding to the court query, the State counsel said an inquiry had already been initiated. But as the matter came up for resumed hearing, the State counsel claimed that the officer posted was not well-conversant with the facts of the case. As such, she was unable to assist the court on the issue.
Allowing the plea, Justice Chauhan asserted: “Considering the fact that all co-accused have been admitted to bail, without adverting to the merits of the instant case, this petition is allowed. The petitioner be admitted to bail during the pendency of the trial, on his furnishing bail bonds and surety bonds, to the satisfaction of the trial court….”
Before parting with the order, Justice Chauhan added: “The State counsel shall place on record the status of the inquiry so initiated against the delinquent officer(s) on or before the next date of hearing,”