New Delhi: The Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday appointed a five-member panel to investigate the security breach of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Punjab recently.
The panel will be led by a former apex court judge, Indu Malhotra.
The others on the committee are the Director-General of National Investigation Agency or his nominee not below the rank of Inspector-General, the Director-General of Police of the Union Territory of Chandigarh, the Additional Director-General of Police (Security) of Punjab and the Registrar-General of the Punjab and Haryana High Court.
The committee will investigate what caused the breach, who was accountable, and what precautions are required to prevent similar lapses in the future, and will submit its findings as soon as possible.
PM Modi was stranded for approximately 20 minutes on a flyover in Punjab's Ferozepur after it was blocked by protesting farmers on his way to a rally last Wednesday, sparking a tremendous political backlash.
In the midst of a frenzied campaign for the Punjab election on February 14, the incident sparked a political spat, with the Centre and the state administration exchanging accusations of protocol violations and launching separate investigations.
Earlier, a Supreme Court bench led by Chief Justice NV Ramana had ordered the BJP-run federal government and the Congress-dominated Punjab government to continue their investigations. During arguments, the Centre told the court that there had been a "total intelligence failure" and a "clear infringement of the SPG (Special Protection Group) Act."
He said that the state administration had not informed the PM's security team that demonstrators were on the route.
The Punjab administration denied any involvement in the PM's last-minute change of plans, claiming that bad weather prevented him from travelling to the spot by helicopter.
Congress further accused the BJP of exploiting the security breach allegations to hide the shame of small numbers at PM Modi's speech.