Patiala Mayor and Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) leader Jaspal Singh Pradhan resigned from office on Monday in the wake of murder charges. He is accused of killing his daughter-in-law Parampreet Singh.
Pradhan tendered his resignation amid mounting pressure from Deputy Chief Minister and SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal to quit his post and public outrage over the alleged murder of 29-year-old Parampreet.
"Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal has directed Mayor of Patiala Municipal Corporation Jaspal Singh Pradhan to immediately tender his resignation from the post of mayor in view of the case registered against him," party secretary Daljit Singh Cheema told IANS.
The Punjab police on Saturday filed a case against Pradhan, the victim's mother-in-law and her husband Harpreet Singh under charges of murder and conspiracy. While Pradhan is yet to be arrested, his wife and son were put behind bars on Sunday.
Pradhan has denied any involvement in the murder. He also refused to acknowledge his relationship with the two accused.
Parampreet and Harpreet Singh were married for nine years ago and had two children.
Reports said that Pradhan had used his influence in trying to push the case as one of suicide.
On Monday, Punjab Chief Minister Prakash Singh formed a Special Investigation Team (SIT) with IGP Shashi Prabha Dwivedi, DIG RK Jaiswal, and superintendent Balbir Singh to probe Pradhan's part in the murder. The committee will submit its investigation report to Deputy CM Badal.
The SIT members visited the crime scene and the victim's family to record their statements.
Initial probe has failed to validate the mayor's role in the heinous crime. But recent evidence indicates that the victim may have been murdered.