Jalandhar cops seize pro-Khalistani radical preacher’s adventure utility vehicle and also recover .315 bore rifle
Punjab Police recovered the ISUZU adventure utility vehicle (AUV), which was used by pro-Khalistani Waris Punjab De chief Amritpal Singh while dodging the cops who were chasing him.
Police recovered the vehicle from Salema village in Jalandhar’s Shahkot. Sources told The New Indian that the vehicle was used by the radical preacher to flee from the Mehatpur-Malsian road.
Jalandhar police also recovered a kirpan, walkie-talkies and live cartridges. Police also recovered .315 bore weapons as well as 57 live cartridges from the AUV.
“We came to know that an abandoned vehicle had been found in Salema village. The key to the vehicle was also lying there. A private walkie-talkie, a .315 bore rifle and 57 live cartridges were found,” Jalandhar Rural Senior Superintendent of Police Swarandeep Singh said.
From changing routes multiple times to using supporters on motorbikes to divert the chasing Punjab Police personnel, the chief of pro-Khalistani outfit Waris Punjab De, Amritpal Singh, has used various tricks to evade the police so far.
“His car reached a one-lane link road of 12 to 13 km. There were six-seven motorbikes into which Amritpal Singh’s car crashed, probably helping him to escape. Some riders were to divert the cops,” said Jalandhar Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Swapan Sharma.
Earlier on Saturday, in a massive crackdown on Khalistani sympathiser Waris Punjab De, the Punjab Police arrested 78 people and detained many others.
A massive manhunt was launched to nab Amritpal, who became the head of the outfit after returning from Dubai last year, and his associates, the police said.
During the state-wide operation, nine weapons, including one .315 bore rifle, seven 12-caliber rifles, one revolver and 373 live cartridges of different calibres, have been recovered so far.
Amritpal rose to prominence after hundreds of his sword-wielding young supporters stormed Amritsar’s Ajnala police station, demanding the release of one of his key aides, Lovepreet Singh Tufan, who had been arrested in a kidnapping case.
They pushed police barricades and attacked policemen. At least six policemen were injured in the resulting clashes.
The police said that the crackdown was launched based on the FIR lodged in the Amritsar district for the attack on the Ajnala police station in February.
Born in 1993, Amritpal Singh dramatically rose to prominence in Punjab’s religiopolitical scene after returning from Dubai to become the chief of ‘Waris Punjab De’ after the death of its founder, actor Deep Sidhu, in a road accident last year.
Several reports quoting intelligence agencies said that he had been planted by Pakistani spy agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) to disturb peace and harmony in Punjab, which has been, by and large, peaceful since the killing of Khalistani militant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale in 1984. Amritpal calls himself a devout follower of Bhindranwale and dresses like him.