Amritpal Singh's gunman arrested, was among accused in Ajnala case
The Punjab Police informed on Thursday that it had arrested fugitive pro-Khalistani preacher and Waris Punjab De chief Amritpal Singh's gunman Tejinder Singh Gill alias Gorkha Baba from Mangewal village in Khanna tehsil of Punjab's Ludhiana district. He is also among the accused in the Ajnala case, in which Singh, five identified accomplices, and around 25 unnamed others are charged with abduction and assault.
Why does this story matter?
- The manhunt to nab Singh entered its sixth day on Thursday. It was launched nearly a month after he along with his supporters attacked Ajnala Police Station with swords and guns to free one of their arrested aides.
- Singh is reportedly a radical preacher who intelligence agencies claim is an agent of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) brought to spread drugs and violence in India.
Gill posed with unlicensed weapons on social media
Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Payal Harsimrat Singh said that Gill was Singh's gunman for a long time, and he used to post pictures with weapons on social media despite having no license. Two of Gill's alleged accomplices have also been detained. In this regard, a separate case has been registered against Gill at the Malaudh Police Station in the Ludhiana district.
Gill served sentence in liquor smuggling case earlier
Gill has been charged under Sections 107 and 151 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). According to the police, Gill had previously served time in prison for liquor smuggling and had another brawl case filed against him. Earlier in the day, seven associates of Singh were brought to Baba Bakala Court in Amritsar and were sent to police custody.
Six illegal firearms seized
Notably, all seven persons produced in the court were accused in the Ajnala case. An FIR was filed against them, including Singh, under the Arms Act. Six illegal 12-bore firearms were recovered from their possession, the police said. They were allegedly among the hundreds of Waris Punjab De supporters who attacked the police station, claiming that Lovepreet Singh alias Toofan was tortured after arrest.
Ajnala case was filed by Damdami Taksal preacher
The case was filed by Varinder Singh, a preacher of Damdami Taksal's Ajnala chapter, who supported Waris Punjab De but later had a fallout with Singh. Notably, Singh has been trying to position himself as the successor of Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, who was the 14th head of the Damdami Taksal, a Sikh seminary, and led the Khalistan movement in the early 1980s.