‘Police negligence led to killing'

Even as citizens of Chandigarh are shell-shocked over the kidnapping and subsequent murder of five-year-old Khushpreet Singh, a resident of Burail whose body was recovered from Mohali near here on Wednesday, widespread “anger'' against the police spilt over to the roads for the second consecutive day on Thursday.

The announcement of a magisterial inquiry by the Chandigarh Administration on Thursday did not assuage the “hurt feelings'' of the people in general and parents and relatives of the victim who was reportedly kidnapped from his house 16 days ago.

Angry mobs roamed the roads hurling stones at policemen who were rushed to the area on Wednesday evening after violence was directed at the cops who had treated the kidnapping of the boy “casually''. What irked the residents of Burail even more was the fact that the boy was murdered even though his family had paid a ransom of Rs. 4 lakh to the kidnappers reportedly in the presence of cops who failed to arrest them.

Demanding registration of cases and even termination of “the guilty policemen who had mishandled the case,'' the agitators blocked roads near Burail and damaged public and private vehicles. They also attacked Superintendent of Police H.S. Ghumman, eye-witnesses said.

Anti-riot policemen were deployed. The protestors were cane-charged and water cannons were used to disperse them.Angry crowds had gheraoed the Sector 45 police post on Wednesday night and hurled stones at the cops who had retaliated by lobbing tear gas shells and using water cannons. Even though a post-mortem was performed, the boy's parents and relatives have refused to accept the body until concrete action is taken against the policemen.

An official spokesman said prohibitory orders had been imposed around the General Hospital and the Burail area.

He further said that Home Secretary Ram Niwas had asked Inquiry Officer M. L. Sharma to inquire into the kidnapping and subsequent murder of the boy as well as “the lapses committed by the police'' and submit his report within 10 days.

  • The boy was kidnapped 16 days ago from his house
  • Ransom paid to the kidnappers ‘in presence of the police'