Tribune News Service
Panchkula, August 19
The presence of as many as 3,000 Dera followers outside the Panchkula district courts complex took the administration by surprise today.
The turnout was unexpected if inputs received by the police are to be believed.
The followers from different parts of Haryana, Punjab and Chandigarh gathered outside the courts complex for the hearing in the murder case against Dera head Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh in the CBI court today. Senior police officials, including the DSPs, did not allow any Dera follower to enter the complex.
They latter had reached Panchkula in private buses, tractors, cars and also on Haryana Roadways buses from Ambala to Panchkula. Their vehicles were parked at different places in Sector 1.
After the hearing, they returned to their respective places, saying they would again come in large numbers on August 25, the day the special CBI court will pronounce its verdict in the rape case against the Dera chief.
Dalbir Singh, a follower, who had come from Ambala, said the Dera head had been implicated and that they would come again on August 25.
Another follower Ramesh said they would be present on both sides of road from Sirsa to Panchkula on the day. They would not tolerate anything against the Dera chief, he said. Meanwhile, sources in the Police Department claimed that many followers were still in the town.
Cops on alert
Panchkula Police Commissioner AS Chawla said they had received inputs about the presence of Dera followers. “Police personnel deployed outside the courts complex did not allow any follower to enter the premises,” he said. An anti-sabotage team with a sniffer dog and a bomb disposal squad will be deployed outside the court on Sunday. Also, the manpower will be increased.
DC meets officials
Panchkula DC Gauri Parashar Joshi met district administration officials. She asked them to cancel employees’ leave till August 30.
The CBI special court on Saturday deferred the hearing in the murder case against the Dera head to September 16.
No leave for cops, admn staff till Aug 31
Mohali: To avoid any untoward incident during the trial of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Baba Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh in Panchkula, the district administration and the Police Department have cancelled employees’ leave till August 31. A circular has been issued to all departments by Mohali Deputy Commissioner Gurpreet Kaur Sapra after receiving a communiqué from Mohali Senior Superintendent of Police Kuldeep Singh Chahal. “A part of the stretch from Lalru to Zirakpur leads to Panchkula, where a large number of followers are expected to turn up. We can’t take any chance and have asked the employees not to go on leave, except in case of an emergency,” said Sapra.
The Mohali SSP said: “On the hearing date, a large number of Dera followers are expected to show up.”
1,800 cops on duty
As many as 1,800 police personnel will be deployed on the route from Lalru to Zirakpur on the hearing date. Senior officials, anti-riot and quick-reaction teams will see to it that the situation does not go out of hand. As many as 400 personnel had been summoned from the Punjab Police and other district police headquarters.
By Akash Ghai
News Courtesy : TOI,Tribune