'Politicians hand in glove with drug mafia got away'

'Politicians hand in glove with drug mafia got away'

Badal govt didn't act against leaders named in drug nexus, says ex-DGP

A former top police officer of Punjab has charged the state government with not taking action against several senior leaders of ruling Akali Dal and opposition Congress for their alleged collusion with drug mafia in the state.

In a letter to the Punjab and Haryana High Court, former Director General of Police (Prisons) Shashi Kant has alleged that the state government had not taken any action against over 10 senior leaders of Shiromani Akali Dal, BJP and Congress despite him submitting a list of the politicians who were hand-in-glove with drug mafia.

The Punjab government, however, trashed his claims, saying the former DGP should have take action when he held the post and there was no point in making allegations now.

“Why didn’t Shashi Kant take action then when he was serving as the jail DGP Punjab,” Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal said in Ferozpur.

Kant had written to the court in August on drug menace in the state. His letter was considered as a PIL and he was asked to appear before the court on August 13. He submitted a detailed report on the menace to the court on Monday.

Taking account of his submissions, the Division Bench, led by Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, on Tuesday said the court would study the petition and take a decision.
Kant said in his letter to the court that he had submitted the list of politicians involved in drug smuggling around six years ago to the then state government.

“At that time, around a dozen senior politicians were directly or indirectly involved in narcotics smuggling. I had also met then Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal to discuss the matter. He had promised me that he would speak to some of these politicians but no action has been taken so far,” Kant said.

He refused to divulge the names, saying he will reveal them to the court if required.
“The list includes the names of SAD, BJP and Congress politicians. The record of the findings is with the police department,” he said.

Kant blamed “narco politics” for Punjab’s drug epidemic and claimed in his petition that many politicians from various parties ran “the racket” either directly or through henchmen in connivance with police.

On Kant’s statement in court, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, who also holds the Home portfolio, said in Khadoor Sahib, “It seems Kant is moving towards contesting elections. When Kant was DGP prisons, he never informed about such mafia in the state. Till date, no politician’s name has come up.”