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SGPC forms legal panel to pursue case of disappearance of Akal Takht ex-Jathedar Gurdev Singh Kaunke

The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), acting on a directive from the Akal Takht, on Wednesday set up a five-member legal panel to pursue the case of disappearance and alleged murder of former acting Jathedar of Akal Takht Gurdev Singh Kaunke in the early 1990s.

The SGPC panel was formed under the leadership of senior advocate Puran Singh Hundal. Punjab and Haryana High Court advocate Puneet Kaur Sekhon, former Jalandhar District Attorney Advocate Baltej Singh Dhillon, former Hoshiarpur District Attorney Advocate Amarjit Singh Dhami and SGPC member and advocate Bhagwant Singh Sialka were other members of the panel.

The Takht Damdama Sahib Jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh, meanwhile, asked the AAP-led state government to initiate concrete action and bring justice as the report of Kaunke’s alleged killing remained buried under files.

The Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Raghbir Singh had directed the SGPC to initiate legal action over a report alleging role of police in disappearance of Kaunke, the Sarbat Khalsa-appointed acting Akal Takht Jathedar in 1992, and also asked the SGPC to register a case of “murder” against those guilty after taking legal opinion.

SGPC president Harjinder Singh Dhami said: “The panel will be examining the report that was received by the Akal Takht recently. No laxity would be allowed in this case and exemplary action would be ensured against the culprits.”

The Punjab Human Rights Organisation recently made public an investigation report of Kaunke’s case prepared by former additional DGP BP Tiwari and submitted in 1999 with the then SAD-BJP government. No action was taken by the successive governments till date.

Giani Harpreet Singh, former Akal Takht Jathedar, said: “I ask the state government to scrutinise the report so that those guilty should be punished. Even if any culprit is dead now, he too should be held accountable symbolically in this case.”

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