8 extradition pleas in Punjab’s Bhola drug case pending with Canada: Indian newspaper report

THE Hindustan Times newspaper of India in a report from Chandigarh states that India has requested Canada for the extradition of eight people accused of being involved in illegal drugs in connection with the Jagdish Bhola drug racket case.

This was revealed in a report by India’s External Affairs Ministry [Foreign Affairs Ministry] that was filed in compliance with the Punjab and Haryana High Court order on October 26.

The court had asked for a status report from the federal government on the extradition of the accused. The report is expected to be taken up for a hearing on Thursday, November 18.

According to the Hindustan Times, the extradition requests are for Ranjit Singh Aujla, Gursewak Singh Dhillon, Nirankar Singh Dhillon, Sarabjit Singh Sander, Lehmbar Singh Daleh, Amarjit Singh Kooner, Pardeep Singh Dhaliwal and Amrinder Singh Chheena.

“The report reveals that while proceedings in one case are pending before the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) and others are pending with the Department of Justice, Canada,” the newspaper said.

Former international wrestler and Arjuna awardee Jagdish Bhola was on Wednesday convicted and sentenced by a special CBI [Central Bureau of Investigation] court in 2019 in Mohali, Punjab, in a multi-million drugs racket, termed as Punjab’s biggest, that was busted in 2013.

Bhola was a Deputy Superintendent of Police in Punjab Police, but was dismissed from service in 2012 after his links with the drugs racket were revealed. He was arrested in November 2013 in connection with a Rs 7,000 million drugs racket. Subsequent police action against the drug mafia led to the busting of a Rs 60,000 million drugs racket.

The drugs racket became controversial with names of politicians, including ministers and legislators, industrialists and police officers, being linked to the scandal.

There were 74 accused in the drugs case.