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Justice Undone? Lost Voices, Lost Years: Get Scenario Beyond the Verdict in the Ranjit Singh Case

Assessing the Acquittal of Baba Ram Rahim in the Ranjit Singh Case

In a recent ruling by the Haryana and Punjab High Court, Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh and four others were acquitted in the long-standing Ranjit Singh murder case. The decision came out on 28th May, 2024.

The decision has sparked mixed reactions, with Ram Rahim Singh’s followers rejoicing while others speculate political undertones, particularly in the wake of recent elections. But what lies beneath the surface? Let’s delve into the intricacies of the case to understand the truth.

The Saga of Ranjit Singh’s Murder dates back to July 10, 2002, in Punjab

Initially, his father, Joginder Singh, the only eye witness, filed an FIR implicating four individuals, including the village Sarpanch, citing political rivalries. Strikingly, there was no mention of Dera Sacha Sauda, its chief, or the other five accused individuals initially targeted by the case.

However, concerns regarding the investigation surfaced when Joginder Singh raised doubts about the efficacy of the Haryana Police’s handling of the case. Subsequently, the Haryana and Punjab High Court intervened, forwarding the complaint to the CBI for a thorough probe in 2003. This marked the beginning of the intricate legal journey.

The CBI’s investigation led to the accusation of Dera chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim and six others, including Dera manager Inder Sain, who had passed away during the legal proceedings. Eventually, five of the accused were convicted by a CBI court in 2021. Yet, numerous appeals ensued, prolonging the legal battle.

Central to the case were eyewitness testimonies from the victim’s father and uncle. However, discrepancies emerged regarding the alleged murder weapon. Despite claims of revolvers being used during the attack, the CBI’s investigation failed to secure crucial evidence, leaving room for doubt.

On What Basis was the Case Registered against the Dera Chief and Five Others?

It was reported that four assailants arrived holding revolvers and fired indiscriminately. However, the CBI investigation into the matter was found to be inadequate. These weapons have not been secured as evidence thus far. In the case of Sabdil (one of the accused), it was noted that he discharged his service revolver, with the specific serial number provided.

However, this revolver had been issued to Sabdil in 1997 and subsequently returned in 1999 due to some technical defects, to the Mansa court, where Sabdil was stationed as a gunman attached to the Dera chief. The significance lies in the fact that the revolver implicated in the murder of Ranjit Singh in 2002 had actually been surrendered to the Mansa court in 1999.

Furthermore, when the CBI requested a forensic examination, they retrieved the weapon from the Mansa court, but no weapons were found in Sabdil’s possession. This suggests that the CBI failed to conduct a thorough investigation and was left confused about whether Sabdil possessed a weapon, despite it being surrendered.

Supporting evidence includes a letter from the SSP obtained through RTI, confirming the revolver’s deposit in the Mansa court’s armory in 1999. The revolver taken from Shabdil was a 9mm revolver, unrelated to the murder.

It raised questions about the investigative accuracy of the CBI. Moreover, other accused individuals had no weapons seized from them, further muddling the case.

Flaws Exposed by Punjab Haryana High Court in CBI Inquiry

Justice Thakur and Justice Batra of Punjab Haryana High Court, Chandigarh, have unveiled a scathing 163-page report, revealing glaring inadequacies in the CBI investigation process. The findings paint a picture of incomplete and tainted inquiry, casting doubt on the integrity of the evidence presented.

The report highlights a disturbing trend where crucial evidence is deemed unreliable, raising serious concerns about the credibility of the investigation by the CBI. It underscores the pressing need for courts to conduct thorough and impartial examinations, rather than succumbing to the sensationalism often perpetuated by media trials.

One glaring omission is the failure to secure key pieces of evidence, such as the alleged vehicle (Wagon R car) involved in the incident, which was never brought into custody. Additionally, eyewitness testimonies indicating the presence of four armed assailants went unheeded, with the CBI neglecting to seize the reported weapons.

Furthermore, the absence of a site plan for the purported murder plot on June 16, 2002, underscores a lack of diligence on the part of the investigating authorities.

These revelations serve as a stark reminder of the critical role played by rigorous and unbiased investigations in upholding justice. The shortcomings identified in this report must serve as a catalyst for reform, ensuring that no case is marred by inadequate scrutiny and procedural lapses.

Untainted Justice in Ranjit Murder Case Independent of Elections

Amidst the fervor of speculation, some have sought to tether the Ranjit Singh case to the political sphere, particularly in light of the recent Lok Sabha elections.

However, it’s crucial to underscore that the independence of the court’s decisions stands resolute, impervious to the ebb and flow of electoral dynamics. Such attempts to politicize a matter of justice not only detract from the gravity of the issue at hand but also risk eroding public trust in the sanctity of judicial processes.

It is imperative to uphold the principle that the pursuit of justice transcends political agendas. It anchors itself firmly in the realms of fairness, impartiality, and the rule of law.

Lost Voices, Lost Years: Get Scenario Beyond the Verdict in the Ranjit Singh Case

The protracted legal saga surrounding the Ranjit Singh murder case spans nearly two decades, during which the accused endured immense hardship and suffering. Tragically, both Inder Sain and Jasvir Singh passed away amidst the prolonged trial, leaving behind grieving families and shattered lives.

The toll of 19-20 years of legal battle cannot be overstated. For the accused, it meant enduring the weight of suspicion and legal proceedings, often without reprieve or closure. As they fought to prove their innocence, they were stripped of precious moments with their families, unable to witness the growth of their children or provide the support and love that family entails.

For Inder Sain and Jasvir Singh, the ordeal proved fatal. Their untimely deaths serve as poignant reminders of the human cost of justice delayed, leaving behind families grappling with the dual burden of loss and unresolved legal matters.

The impact reverberates beyond the courtroom, extending to the lives of the accused families, who endured years of anguish and uncertainty. Children grew up without the guidance and presence of their fathers, spouses navigated the challenges of single parenthood, and families grappled with financial strain and social stigma.

While the recent acquittals may bring a semblance of vindication, they come too late for those who have already suffered irreparable losses. The belated justice underscores the urgent need for legal reforms to expedite proceedings and mitigate the human toll of prolonged trials.

The Ranjit Singh case stands as a poignant symbol of the relentless suffering endured by those trapped in the wheels of injustice.

But some questions need to be answered! Who bears the responsibility for the tarnished image of Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh over more than two decades?

The Ranjit Singh case serves as a rallying cry for the urgent imperative to overhaul legal systems, ensuring that no individual suffers the indignity of prolonged injustice. It’s a solemn vow to safeguard the rights and well-being of all involved, to heal the wounds of the past, and to build a future where every voice is heard, and every life is valued.

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