Former Supreme Court Judge, Justice Markandey Katju has described the Akali Dal-led government of Punjab as dictatorial adding that it could not be tolerated any longer.
Writing on his blog, the former chairman of Press Council of India said, “A delegation of 4 Sikh gentlemen came from Chandigarh to meet me today. We had a long discussion for an hour and a half. They told me that the present Punjab government is behaving totally undemocratically, like Nadir Shah , arresting people who criticise them and slapping trumped up charges of sedition, etc.against them. They gave a large number of specific instances. All this has created a reign of terror in Punjab.”
He said that he had heard of several reports of corruption and brutalities by Punjab government, headed by Prakash Singh Badal.
He added, “For quite some time I have been receiving reports of the autocratic and zalim behaviour of the Badal govt. This cannot be tolerated anymore. and must stop. In a democracy, the people are supreme, and they have a right to criticise the govt. So the bureaucrats and police officers of Punjab who do such illegal acts of arresting and slapping trumped up charges against critics of the state government at the behest of their political masters are accessories to high crimes.”
Drawing a parallel with the perpetrators of Nazi Germany, Justice Katju warned the civil servants that ‘they must know that at the Nuremburg trials the Nazi war criminals took the plea that orders are orders, but this plea was rejected and they were hanged.’
“So such bureaucrats and police officers are hereby warned and called upon to to stop their illegal acts, and refuse to carry out illegal orders of their political masters, otherwise they will be given harsh punishment,” Justice Katju added.
Punjab has witnessed a large-scale violence and unrest in the recent months particularly after the incident of Faridkot sacrilege, which led to the deaths of two Sikh youth. The controversy had gained international significance after an angry youth decided to lodge his protest on a live BBC programme in UK.
The state, which is currently being ruled by Akali Dal and the BJP, is scheduled to go for elections in 2017.