Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann on Tuesday accused the previous dispensations of ignoring the drug menace in the state and said his government will soon initiate action against those named in three SIT reports on the alleged nexus between police officials and drug traffickers.
His statement came days after the Punjab and Haryana High Court opened three out of four previously sealed reports on the role of police officials in the drug trade in the state.
The reports were submitted on February 1, March 15, and May 8 in 2018 by a Special Investigation Team formed by the high court under the leadership of then DGP S Chattopadhayaya. The reports were lying with the high court since then.
During a hearing on March 28, the high court asked the state government to take action with regard to the reports.
In a tweet in Punjabi, Mann said, “ (I) have received 3 envelopes related to the drug case in Punjab, opened by the Hon'ble High Court, that had remained closed for many years. Strict action will be taken against those who ruined the youth of Punjab with drugs.”
In an official statement later, Mann said strict action will be taken against those who have been named in these reports.
He alleged that the drug trade flourished during the previous Akali-BJP and Congress regimes and ruined the future generations of the state. He said the reports had been hanging fire for a long time as none of the previous governments was sincere to take action against those who ruined the future of Punjab.
During a hearing in February, the state government had told the court that the accusation of the state's failure in acting on the SIT reports was misconceived as these reports were lying with the court.
Mann had given his consent to bring into public domain all the sealed reports submitted before the high court pertaining to a nexus between police officers and drug traffickers.
The SIT reports were opened in the high court on March 28 following a petition filed by advocate Navkiran Singh of Lawyers for Human Rights International (LFHRI) in this regard. Singh was an intervener in the 2013 suo motu petition in the drug menace matter in Punjab.
-With PTI Input