The Supreme Court on Wednesday constituted a committee headed by retired top court judge Justice Indu Malhotra to investigate the security lapse during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Punjab visit on January 5. The panel will also comprise of Director General of National Investigation Agency, Director General of Security of Punjab and Registrar General of Punjab and Haryana High Court as its members.
Supreme Court, while setting up an independent committee, said the panel will inquire into causes of the security breach, persons responsible for it and the measures to be taken in future for preventing such security breaches of VVIPs.
On Monday, the court had said it would set up a panel headed by its former judge to probe the security breach and stayed the parallel inquiries by committees of the Centre and the state government into the lapses.
Stressing that the apex court was not “undermining the importance of the security of the Prime Minister” and dealing it with “all seriousness”, a bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) N V Ramana said that the separate inquiries by panels set by the Centre and the state government will be stayed.
The bench, also comprising Justices Surya Kant and Hima Kohli, took note of the submissions of Solicitor General Tushar Mehta about the time frame within which the court-appointed panel should give the report and said it will keep this aspect in mind.
The top court was hearing the plea of an organisation, Lawyers Voice, seeking a thorough investigation into the breach in Modi’s security in Punjab to ensure there is no such incident in the future.
On January 5, the Prime Minister’s convoy was stranded on a flyover due to a blockade by protesters in Ferozepur after which he returned from poll-bound Punjab without attending any event, including a rally.