Pawan Chamling expresses his disappointment in the recent NK Jain committee findings on the Padam Gurung case and urges the people of Sikkim to continue to stand by justice.
"At long last, the Jain Committee submitted its report on the mysterious death of Padam Gurung. The report says that the death was accidental. The patient waiting with his family has ended now. Unfortunately, this was not what the bereaved family had been waiting for during this agonizingly long investigation," said the former CM.
Further Chamling claimed that all the circumstantial evidence, audio recordings and videos of some eyewitnesses and simple logic suggest that there is no possibility that Padam Gurung could have died in the 1.5 feet drain.
"Although the government has closed the case on the conclusion of an “accidental death”, there are too many unanswered questions that beg answers. Two police officers have been suspended as an afterthought to appease the public. If they had committed such lapses, why were they not suspended during the police investigation when the lapses took place? Why now? What about the several press conferences by the victim’s family members and acquaintances alleging that the police tried to coerce them to change their statement? If it were indeed an accidental death, what was the need for coercion?," added the SDF leader.
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Slamming the state government's approach in the death case, Chamling said that the day that the SIT for the Padam Gurung case was to submit its report, the Chief Minister declared a one-man committee headed by retired Justice NK Jain.
"This was nothing but an eyewash to drag out the investigation for a few more months till public anger subsided. Before the police could finish investigating, the case was handed over to an SIT and before the SIT could finish investigating, the case was handed over to the Jain Committee. We have heard the conclusion of the Jain Committee but what were the findings of the police investigation? What were the findings of the SIT?" he added.
Chamling also claimed that the CCTV footage was being tampered with and questioned the Jain Committee in terms of video tampering detection and authentication of video files as those video footage were vitally important to the investigation of Padam Gurung’s death.
"As the saying goes, कानूनको हात लामो हुन्छ। दाम्लो मकिन्छ मामलो मकिन्दैन। The people of Sikkim who believe in democracy and who are law abiding citizens must not lose hope. Padam Gurung’s murderers will one day be punished. There is no doubt about this. I suggest that the people of Sikkim must stand together in the face of such blatant injustice. I pray for the departed Late Padam Gurung and extend my solidarity with the family of the deceased. I am with them at this difficult time. The people of Sikkim are with them," Chamling stated.
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