Chandigarh, April 30: A day after clamping a 24-hour curfew in Punjab’s Patiala’s town after police had to fire into the air following a massive clash between members of the Shiv Sena and pro-Khalistan sword-bearing sympathisers outside the Kali Mata temple, the state government on Saturday transferred top police officials.
Also to prevent spread of rumours, the government ordered shutdown of mobile internet services and SMS services in Patiala district on Saturday.
On directions of Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann, the government transferred the Inspector General of Police (Patiala range), Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) and the Superintendent of Police (SP), an official statement said.
A spokesperson for the Chief Minister’s Office said Mukhwinder Singh Chinna has been appointed as new Inspector General, while Deepak Parik and Wazir Singh have been appointed as new the SSP and the SP, respectively.
Witnesses told the police that Nihangs, who gathered in front of the Dukh Niwaran Sahib gurdwara on Friday to oppose the Khalistan ‘Murdabad March’ of the Shiv Sena, marched towards the shrine, raising pro-Khalistan slogans.
A police officer was injured while trying to stop the Nihangs, the police said.
Harish Singla, the executive president of the Shiv Sena, led the anti-separatist march from Arya Samaj Chowk to Kali Devi Temple. They were raising slogans against Khalistan.
“The Shiv Sena will never allow Khalistan to be formed in Punjab or anywhere in India,” said Singla.
He also said that chief of the banned Sikhs For Justice (SFJ), Gurpatwant Singh Pannu had given the call to mark the Khalistan foundation day on April 29.
Meanwhile, to mark protest over the incident Hindu outfits observed a shutdown in Patiala on Saturday.