"This is what happens when somebody speaks against govt," Sukhpal Khaira's son Mehtab Singh
Chandigarh: After the detention of Congress MLA Sukhpal Singh, Khaira's son Mehtab Singh on Thursday alleged that this is what happens when somebody speaks against the government.
In an early morning operation on Thursday, a team of Punjab Police reached Khaira’s residence and conducted a raid in connection with an old case registered in 2015 under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act in Jalalabad, Fazilka.
"Sukhpal Singh exposed the drunk face of Bhagwant Mann and his party. He always stood by the families of those who died of a drug overdose in Punjab...this is what happens when somebody speaks against the government. This is the second arrest of my father in 5 years. This is the after-effect of speaking the truth," Mehtab Singh said.
"In 2015 an FIR was used for this arrest, on that FIR, the court summoned us and we challenged that order in the Supreme Court and the Supreme Court quashed that order," he added.
He further said that the law is equal for everyone so the family will follow all the procedures.
"The law is equal for everyone, so first we will post remand and we will go to regular bail and then High Court. We will fight. If they think that filing the case will scare us no, they are wrong as they don't know Sukhpal Khaira," he said.
Mehtab Singh also met with Punjab Congress chief Amarinder Singh Raja Brar who assured the family that the Congress party was standing firmly with Sukhpal Khaira.
Sukhpal Singh Khaira was detained by Punjab police in connection with the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act.
Khaira was hosting a Facebook Live where he can be seen arguing with police personnel as they raided his house this morning. A police official can be seen in the video telling Khaira that a SIT has been formed in an old drug smuggling case.
In the video, Khaira is also seen raising slogans of "Punjab Sarkar murdabad" as the police personnel detain him.
Earlier in 2015, there are two cases originated with the unearthing of a cross-border drug smuggling network in Fazilka, Punjab, leading to the seizure of heroin, gold biscuits, weapons, cartridges, and Pakistani SIM cards and the second of a fake passport racket being run in Delhi.
As the trial went on, nine smugglers, including Gurdev Singh, Manjit Singh, Harbans Singh, and Subhash Chander, were sentenced in October 2017 in connection with the Fazilka case. As per the chargesheet, Khaira was closely associated with Gurdev Singh, the leader of the Fazilka drug smuggling racket, and is accused of having sheltered him.
The primary accusations against Khaira include supporting an international gang of smugglers, having sheltered him and receiving financial benefits from drug traffickers, and enjoying the proceeds of crime.
On February 16, 2023, a Supreme Court bench of Justices BR Gavai and Vikram Nath quashed the summoning order against Khaira in the drugs case.
Sukhpal Khaira is an MLA from Bholath in Kapurthala of Punjab and Chairman of All India Kisan Congress.
The arrest of Sukhpal Khaira is expected to further dent the relations of AAP and the Congress which have come together to form the INDIA alliance at the centre. The state unit of the Congress has opposed any tie-up or seat-sharing arrangement with the AAP in Punjab.