Punjab Congress chief Sunil Jakhar on Wednesday called for a probe to ascertain Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president and then home minister Sukhbir Badal’s role in sacrilege incidents in the state and the firing on the anti-sacrilege protesters in 2015.

Praising the Justice Ranjit Singh Commission report which dealt with the incidents of sacrilege at Village Burj Jawahar Singh Wala, Bargari, Gurusar and Mallke, as well as the firing incident of Behbal Kalan and Kotkapura, Jakhar said it is silent on the role of then home minister Sukhbir.

Lashing out at SAD president as General Dyer of Behbal Kalan for his dubious role in the sacrilege incidents of holy Guru Granth Sahib and subsequent firing in protestors, the Congress leader demanded thorough investigation into the charges of dereliction of duty by Sukhbir, who was then the state home minister, as proved by the Justice (Retd.) Ranjit Singh Commission report.

Jakhar said Sukhbir was evidently the evil behind the sacrilege case as he had clearly colluded with Sirsa Dera to foment communal strife and polarise voters in the state by stage-managing the tragic incident.

The Lok Sabha member from Gurdaspur said Sukhbir deserved the harshest punishment for his tardy handling of the Behbal Kalan case which resulted in the killing of two innocent persons.

He said Sukhbir was scared of visiting the victim families and till date had not shared the grief of those Sikhs who were first tortured by the police and then let off saying there was nothing against them. He was, referring to two Sikhs who were paraded before the media by Sukhbir claiming that the sacrilege conspirators had been caught. One of them cannot walk properly even today, Jakhar said, asking Sukhbir to go and apologise to the victim families.

Even the Zora Singh Commission, which was constituted by the SAD government, had established that people had been fired upon from a very close range and the intention was to kill and not threaten the protesters, he added.

Jakhar demanded that Sukhbir come out in open about the facts leading to the eventual unfortunate incident of firing at the unarmed people and subsequent killing of those protesting peacefully after the sacrilege incident at Bargari.

Sukhbir should come forward to explain whether, as the home minister, he ordered the DGP to fire at the peaceful protesters and if not, then how did then DGP Sumedh Singh Saini dare to defy his orders, demanded Jakhar.