Punjab is all set to launch a dedicated police force that will only patrol during the night. Deputy Chief Minister, Sukhbir Singh Badal, who is also the home minister, announced the constitution of the separate force for night duty, on Wednesday.
Addressing the media after inducting Congress MLA Joginder Pal Jain into the Akali Dal here, Sukhbir said that Punjab will be the first state in the country to have such a force and added that the state would depute separate SP-level officers, who will be in-charge of districts for night hours only to check crime.
Stating that under the current conditions policemen were not getting adequate rest, Sukhbir said night force personnel would be given permanent rest during the day. The deputy chief minister said the Punjab Police was being sensitised to take prompt steps in all cases of crime against women.
He added that surprisingly not a single woman was being recruited in the police force and on his initiative, over 3,000 women have been recruited in the last year. The deputy chief minister said he had directed the police to ensure that women personnel form 15 per cent of the force. He said that for the first time, women DSPs and inspectors would be directly recruited in the state and the case was being put to the Cabinet.
Trying to play down the Ludhiana incident, in which an Assistant Inspector General of Police, S S Mand, was beaten up a former Youth Akali Dal leader, Sukhbir said that nobody, at whatever position, would be allowed to take the law into their hands. He said that Punjab Police has already arrested an accused and the hunt was on for two others. They were expelled from the YAD more than six months back, he added. “The police officer was not wearing uniform and he was with his friends at a bar. How could one know that he was a police officer. If he was on duty and in uniform then you can say it was attack on a police officer. We promptly took action,” Sukhbir said.
“If the Akali Dal cadre had been given a free-hand in the state, then they would not have been arrested promptly. In SAD, we are against anti-social elements,’’ he added.
On the main accused in the case, Maninder Pal Singh, being seen in the VIP box with cabinet minister Bikramjit Singh Majithia during