‘Conduct narco test on watchman accused of burning church’

September 11th, 2008 - 8:42 pm ICT by IANS  

Bhopal, Sep 11 (IANS) The Congress Thursday said here that the watchman accused of setting fire to an 86-year-old church in Madhya Pradesh’s Ratlam district should be put to narco-test and demanded an inquiry by a sitting judge.The St Bartholomew Church at Ratlam was burnt down Sep 7 allegedly by activists of the Bajrang Dal and the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP). But Deputy Inspector General (Ratlam range) Varun Kapoor has said that circumstantial evidence indicated that church watchman Noel Pare was behind the crime.

Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) president Suresh Pachouri Thursday told reporters that according to the report of a Congress team that went to inquire into the incident at Ratlam, the police theory that the watchman has set the church on fire does not appear to be true.

“I demand that the matter be inquired by a sitting judge and the poor watchman, Pare, be put to narco test so that the truth comes out,” said Pachouri.

Narco test involves administering barbiturates or certain other chemical substances, most often Pentothal Sodium, to lower a subject’s inhibitions so that the subject will more freely share information.

The police arrested Pare last Monday evening and said he set the church ablaze as he was unhappy with the church authorities.

“Pare has confessed before the police that his intention was not to set the church on fire. He simply wanted the authorities to have a bad name for not having managed the premises properly.

“He had bought one litre of kerosene and the shopkeeper too has identified Pare. He took the extreme step after being scolded by the church authorities,” Kapoor had said.

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