Punjab Assembly
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The cases will now be probed by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) of Punjab police. 

Chandigarh: The Punjab government issued fresh notifications on Thursday for the withdrawal of sacrilege cases from the CBI.

As per the new notifications, these cases will now be probed by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) of Punjab police.

With this, the government denotified its earlier notifications, transferring the cases to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

The move comes after the state Assembly passed a resolution last month to withdraw the investigation of the sacrilege incidents of the Guru Granth Sahib from the CBI.

A spokesperson of the Chief Minister’s Office said the decision was taken in the wake of the inquiry report submitted by the Justice (retd) Ranjit Singh Commission, which was discussed and deliberated upon in the special session of the Assembly on August 28.

It was observed by the House that even after a lapse of three years since the entrustment of investigation, no report was filed by the CBI.

Considering the importance of the issues at hand, the House concluded that it was appropriate that the incidents of alleged sacrilege that occurred at Bargari, Burj Jawahar Singh Wala and the related incidents of police firing, for which cases were registered and the probe entrusted with the CBI be withdrawn from the central agency and be investigated by the state police’s SIT.

It was also felt by the House that this course of action would bring an efficacious conclusion to the issues of high public importance and ensure that the emotive character of the issue did not adversely affect the civil society in the state of Punjab and would be in the larger public interest.

In exercise, according to the powers conferred under section 6 of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946 (Central XXV of 1946), the Punjab governor has withdrawn his consent given to all the members of the Delhi Special Police Establishment to exercise their powers and jurisdiction in entire Punjab for investigating three cases registered at Faridkot by withdrawing the notification issued on November 2, 2015.

Likewise, the notification issued on August 24, 2018, through which the governor had entrusted the investigations related to the police firing cases registered at Faridkot with the CBI, has also been de-notified.

The CBI was already probing three sacrilege cases, including the theft of a “bir” (copy of Guru Granth Sahib) from Burj Jawahar Singh Wala village in Kotkapura.

On July 30, the Congress government in Punjab had announced that the probe into the Kotkapura and Behbal Kalan firing cases that followed the Bargari sacrilege incident would be handed over to the CBI. – PTI

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