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Punjab SP fails to appear before probe panel, asks for time 

Chandigarh, Aug 5 (IANS) Controversial Punjab Police officer Salwinder Singh, facing allegations of rape and corruption, on Friday did not appear before a committee probing a sexual harassment complaint filed by five women constables.

Salwinder, a Superintendent of Police, sent an e-mail to Inspector General of Police (IGP) Gurpreet Deo, who heads the inquiry committee, that he required more time to reply to charges against him. He was summoned to appear before the committee on Friday.

He said since a rape and corruption case had been filed against him on Thursday, he needed more time to reply.

Sources in the Punjab Police headquarters said Salwinder did not appear before the committee as he could be apprehending arrest if he turned up.

The rape and corruption case has been registered by the Gurdaspur Police against Salwinder, who hit the national headlines after he claimed he was abducted by Pakistani terrorists who later attacked the Pathankot Air Force base in January.

Police officials said raids were being conducted to arrest the officer, who is said to be on the run.

In another inquiry ordered by the Punjab Director General of Police, Salwinder Singh was accused of bigamy by a woman from Tanda town in Hoshiarpur district. She had alleged that he had a teenage son with her.

In the Pathankot attack case, the police officer was questioned by the National Investigation Agency over his abduction claims due to inconsistencies in his version and those of his two companions, a driver and a jeweller. He was later given a clean chit by the NIA.

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