Chandigarh, Nov 1: Former J&K governor NN Vohra on Thursday said community groups against cow-slaughter were a threat as they held roadside trials and lynched many accused.
He was delivering the First KPS Gill Memorial Lecture on ‘National Security–Some Concerns’ at the Indian School of Business here on Thursday, The Tribune reported. The lecture was held to mark Punjab Day.
Punjab Cooperation and Jails Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa presided over the function.
Randhawa, in his address, recalled the troubled times of terrorism in Punjab. He said the late KPS Gill led from the front, especially by taking fast and effective decisions.
“I am humbled to get the opportunity to talk about him in front of a galaxy of serving and retired police officers, especially to share the stage with Vohra who had steered Kashmir through turbulent times,” he said.
Randhawa extolled police officers for fighting narco-terrorism. “I hope one of you will become KPS Gill against narco-terrorism,” he said.
Vohra, in his address, said the best tribute to Gill is to discuss the challenges on terrorism and other issues today.
He said, “Gill joined Punjab Police when there was suspicion all around, even in the civil secretariat. I received midnight orders to join as Punjab Home Secretary. My first job was to build trust. And instill faith among officers who were facing threats. Many colleagues went on leave to perform karsewa at the Golden Temple after Operation Bluestar.”
Vohra said, “There is need to evolve a national security policy. It is not in place currently. This policy has to be formulated in consultation with the state governments. Also, there should be a national security administrative service on the lines of the IAS to meet the challenges of security threats.”
On challenges to internal security, Vohra said the Punjab terrorism happened due to internal failures, which was abetted by Pakistan.
He said, “A recent threat is that of community groups against cow-slaughter. These groups held roadside trials and many accused of cow-slaughter were lynched. Some groups had even formed kangaroo courts to punish young boys and girls who married against the wishes of society.”
Vohra also condemned the violence caused by followers of godmen.
He laid emphasis on the importance of constabulary in dealing with the threats on the ground. “They are the first to respond but seven decades after Independence, they are yet to be made fully effective,” he said.
Vohra also condemned political interference in police postings and transfers. He said political patronage encouraged corruption and indiscipline.