Ex-Akali sarpanch murder case: HC rejects petition seeking to name minister as accused

Chandigarh, Jan 30 (PTI) The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Thursday dismissed a petition by the family of a former Akali sarpanch that had sought to name state minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa as an accused in the ex-village head's murder case.

The court also rejected the petitioner's demand for transferring the case to the CBI, an official release issued by the Punjab Advocate General's office said.

The high court, while dismissing the petition Sandeep Singh, son of the deceased, made it clear that it was totally satisfied with the efforts of the Punjab Police and the Special Investigation Team (SIT) to solve the case.

On November 18, former Akali sarpanch Dalbir Singh, who was also the vice-president of the Shiromani Akali Dal, was shot dead in his native village Dhilwan in Dera Baba Nanak. Later, his legs were chopped off. The accused shot Dalbir six times.   Sandeep Singh, in his petition, had sought direction to protect his life, liberty and property, and that of his family members.

He had also sought to transfer the investigation to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), claiming that the local police was acting under pressure from cabinet minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa.

The petitioner further said that a fair probe would be possible only by an independent agency as he apprehended that Randhawa was behind the murder.

Dismissing the plea, Justice Ramendra Jain observed that the petitioner was trying to make the entire case a media trial and said that the court would not allow it, the AG's office stated.

The SAD had earlier accused Randhawa of allegedly patronising the killers of the former Akali sarpanch, a charge denied by the minister. PTI CHS VSD IJT