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Sunday, 9 August 2020

VIP visits ‘impede’ probe in Batala

Ravi Dhaliwal

Tribune News Service

Batala, August 8

Regular visits of senior politicians and local leaders to the affected areas of the city are acting as an impediment for the police in probing the sequence of events leading to the spurious liquor tragedy, which, in effect, means more time will be taken to nail the offenders.

Not only this, police officials, who are trying to trace the whereabouts of some more accused, are unable to perform their duty as they find themselves bogged down in providing security to these leaders. On Wednesday, Rajya Sabha MP Shwait Malik and Punjab BJP president Ashwani Sharma were in the town while a day later, the cops, instead of going after the offenders, were left guarding Cabinet Ministers Sundar Sham Arora and Aruna Chaudhury. On Friday, MP Partap Singh Bajwa met the kin of the victims.

Earlier this week, AAP and SAD leaders could be seen meeting the victims' kin. The cops geared up today to provide cover to SAD (Democratic) president Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, as he arrives here tomorrow. Although she denied getting affectedby the visits, DSP (City) Parvinder Kaur, who is a

key investigator, had to guide both Arora and Chaudhury through the labyrinthine lanes yesterday.

Senior officials, for obvious reasons, are unwilling to comment on the issue but a majority of them believe such visits should be stopped till investigations are completed.

"A standard operating procedure, like we have for solving certain crimes, should be put in place when such a tragedy takes place. Leaders' visits should be banned till the accused are nabbed," said a senior police officer.

Sheila, mother of deceased Bhupinder Singh, vented out her anger. "Leaders come, pay lip service and go. What do they achieve by reopening our wounds? It will be better for them if they just stay at their homes till we get our lives back on track," she said.

Residents, too, are not much enthused. "Once a leader is in the town, so many traffic bottlenecks are created. It becomes difficult to move," said Harvinder Singh, a local resident.



from The Tribune https://ift.tt/2DpH6R5

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