DW BUREAU / Chandigarh
Former Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Friday demanded that a sitting high court judge probe the deadly violence in Panchkula following the conviction of Dera Sacha Sauda sect chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh in a rape case.
At least 35 people were killed and hundreds injured in the violence in Haryana and Punjab in August. A majority of the dead were shot by police who had to open fire to quell the protesters.
“The entire episode leading to the Panchkula violence needs in-depth probe. A commission headed by a sitting judge of the high court should be set up for the probe,” Hooda said.
He told reporters that former Uttar Pradesh DGP Prakash Singh, under whom the Haryana government had set up a panel to probe the role of police and civil administration officials during the Jat reservation stir last year, should assist the commission.
A number of “conspiracy theories” have been doing the rounds, he said, adding that the state government had first said that Section 144 had been imposed in the city, but how did thousands of Dera followers gathered in Panchkula ahead of Ram Rahim’s conviction by a special CBI court on August 25. “The government first said those who had gathered there did not carry any weapons or sticks, but when violence broke out, they changed their stance,” he said.
The senior Congress leader said his party will take this up, the scrapping of the Dadupur Nalvi canal issue and the alleged injustice to farmers in the upcoming assembly session.
“We will not allow the House to function if the BJP government fails to provide satisfactory answers,” he said.
Hooda said during the three years of reign of the BJP government in Haryana three violent incidents have taken place, including the Jat reservation and Rampal issues.