Seven NRIs among 11 booked for supplying arms in Punjab
Police suspect more target killings of prominent leaders can be carried out in the state; the Brother of Canada-based gangster Landa also nominated in FIR
The State Special Operations Cell (SSOC), Mohali, has booked a total of 11 persons, including seven NRIs, for allegedly supplying arms and ammunition illegally in Punjab to hinder peace.
Police have nominated two accused in the First Information Report (FIR), who are also co-accused in the infamous Mohali Rocket Propelled Grenade (RPG) attack case.
As per the FIR, Punjab Police are suspecting that the accused, in connivance with Pakistan’s agency ISI, could target religious and social leaders besides politicians in Punjab.
Police have nominated 10 persons by name and one unidentified accused in the FIR, including Tarsem Singh Harike, who is the brother of Canada-based gangster turned terrorist Lakhbir Singh Landa.
Seven out of 10 identified are currently residing abroad and operating their gangs in the state from there.
SSOC booked Tarsem Singh Harike, currently residing in Dubai, Jagroop Singh of Lodipur, Anandpur Sahib, currently residing in the USA, Amritpal Singh of Moga, residing in Philippines, Manpreet Singh of Ferozepur, residing in Philippines, Harjot Singh of Fazilka, residing in USA, Harpreet Singh of Makhu, Ferozepur, residing in Italy, Amandeep Singh of Amritsar, residing in Malaysia, besides Gurpinder Singh alias Pinda of Tarn Taran, Gurpreet Singh alias Gopi of Bhura Kohna, Tarn Taran, and Deepak Kumar of Jhajjar, Haryana.
Pertinently, Landa, Jagroop Singh and Deepak Kumar are co-accused in the Mohali RPG attack case also.
As per the FIR, the accused other than supplying arms and ammunition to their accomplices in Punjab and other states also arranged funding and hideouts for their associates involved in criminal activities.
The accused have been booked under Sections 153 (Wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot), 153-A (Promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc), 212 (Harbouring offender), 216 (Harbouring an offender who has escaped from custody), 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of Indian Penal Code and under Section 25 of Arms Act.
Meanwhile, a senior police officer stated that FIR was registered, especially to book those assisting hardcore criminals in disturbing the law and order in the state.
“The ISI is now maintaining links with the gangsters and is equipping them enough to create disturbance here. A lot of arms and ammunition is suspected to have already reached Punjab and thus sincere efforts are being made to trace all the anti-social elements”, said a senior police officer.
After registration of the aforesaid FIR on October 28, Punjab witnessed two broad-daylight murders of Punjab Shiv Sena (Taksali) president Sudhir Suri in Amritsar on November 4 and the killing of a follower of Dera Sacha Sauda, Pardeep Singh, who was shot dead in Kotkapura, Punjab on Thursday after unidentified men opened fire on him outside his shop.
Notably, a post emerged in which Landa claimed his involvement in getting Suri murdered, though Punjab Police denied Landa’s involvement in the case claiming that accused Sandeep Singh had no links with any gangster.
SSOC had booked Landa’s brother a week before suspecting the targeted killing of political and religious leaders in the state.