New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi on Thursday expressed regret to Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the security lapse during his visit to Ferozepur on January 5 and recited a verse to extend his wishes for a long life to him.

Channi expressed regret while participating in the virtual meet chaired by PM Modi to review the COVID-19 situation in India and said that the "Prime Minister is respected to him."

"You visited Punjab. 'Jo hua uske liye mujhe khed hai' (I regret whatever happened)," Channi said, as reported by news agency IANS. "Tum salamat raho qayamat tak, aur khuda kare qayamat na ho (May you stay safe till the end and may there be no end)."

This was Channi's first interaction with PM Modi since the January 5 incident.

The Centre has blammed the Punjab government for the security lapse during PM Modi's Ferozepur visit and had directed it take strict action against those responsible for the breach.

However, Channi had earlier insisted that there was no threat to PM Modi but had expressed his regret over the incident. "There was no security lapse of any kind and there was no situation of any attack," Channi had said.

Amid this, the Supreme Court on Wednesday appointed a five-member committee headed by former apex court judge Indu Malhotra to probe the breach. It said that the questions cannot be left to “one­-sided enquiries” as they needed “judicially trained independent mind” to effectively deal with them.

The top court said the security breach has not been “seriously disputed by either party” and an independent probe was needed as the “war of words” between the two governments was not a solution and would rather impair the need for a robust mechanism to respond at such a critical juncture.

Besides Justice Malhotra, it also appointed Director General or his nominee not below the rank of Inspector General of Police of National Investigation Agency (NIA), Director General of Police of Union Territory of Chandigarh, and Additional Director General of Police (Security) of Punjab as members of the panel.

"Keeping the above submissions made by the parties in view, we are of the considered opinion that these questions cannot be left to be resolved through one­-sided enquiries," the court said, as reported by news agency PTI.

"A judicially trained independent mind, duly assisted by officers who are well acquainted with the security considerations and the Registrar General of the High Court who has seized the record pursuant to our earlier order, would be best placed to effectively visit all issues and submit a comprehensive report for the consideration of this Court."

(With inputs from IANS, PTI)

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma