Captain Amarinder Singh on Tuesday urged the Election Commission to direct the Punjab Police to immediately crack down on the proliferation of firearms in the state, which had been plunged into total lawlessness ahead of the assembly elections.
Reacting strongly to a series of incidents of violence that took place across Punjab on Monday, including a firing incident that left one dead and two injured, Captain said the situation in the state had deteriorated to unprecedented levels and urged the EC to intervene to prevent the crisis from escalating. He appealed to the EC to ensure that its directives on firearms were stringently implemented, while once again calling for immediate imposition of the code of conduct to maintain law and order in the state.
Pointing out that the Punjab police had failed to ensure surrender of all firearms as per the EC directives, he said it seemed to be a deliberate ploy, instigated by the Badal government, to allow armed goons to terrorise the people in the run-up to the polls to pressurize them to vote for the Akali Dal.
The firing incident was related to a land dispute, as was another incident in Kapurthala in which nine women were injured in an acid attack. Amarinder said the ruthlessness with which the assailants unleashed violence in both the incidents was indicative of the complete absence of fear among the goondas and the ruffians in the state, who appeared to be oblivious to any dread of the police.
Captain said these incidents showed total lack of law and order in the state under the Badal regime, which had given a free run to armed gangs, criminals and mafias to unleash their terror on the people of Punjab. Even the state DGP was on record saying that as many as 52 armed gangs were active in Punjab, said Amarinder.
He noted that even after the killing of a woman dancer in celebratory firing in Bathinda district earlier this month, the police had failed to take any action to seize the firearms that seemed to be circulating in abundance through the state.
Amarinder further pointed out that strong and categorical directives by the Supreme Court on possession and sale of acid, the Badal government had failed to curb the same, leading to incidents of acid attacks, which could easily have otherwise been prevented.