The hunt for fugitive pro-Khalistan preacher Amritpal Singh has entered its eight day with the Delhi police on high alert as the Waris Punjab De leader is suspected to have entered the national capital. Meanwhile, raids were carried out in Jammu and an associate who was in touch with Amritpal before March 18 was detained.
Based on inputs by the Punjab police, the associate, identified as Amrik Singh, was detained by Jammu police from RS Pura area of Jammu. He had reportedly been in touch with Amritpal before March 18.
Furthermore, sources said that a woman based in Dehradun, who is an aide of Amritpal, was taken into custody for questioning by the NIA. The woman was associated with Amritpal’s campaign for a long time, sources said.
Sources in Punjab police told CNN-News18 that there are inputs that Amritpal Singh has reached Delhi. Singh’s last location on Friday was traced to Haryana’s Kurukshetra district. The Punjab police has asked the Delhi police to stay on high alert as it is suspected that Amritpal and his associate Papalpreet have entered Delhi after escaping from Kurukshetra in a Haryana roadways bus.
Meanwhile, the Delhi police have already rounded up an aide of Amritpal with whom he was in contact whereas another person has been picked up in the national capital itself, as per sources.
Delhi police said that as per intel, Amritpal had disguised as a ‘sadhu’ and boarded an ISBT bus on March 20. A senior Delhi police official, who asked not to be named, told Hindustan Times that the Punjab Police had information that Amritpal, in the guise of a sadhu (monk), had boarded a bus late on March 20 and deboarded near Peepli on the Rajasthan-Haryana border in Jhunjhnu district the next morning
“To track the travelling trail, the driver and other staff of the bus were questioned on Friday at the ISBT. It was a routine affair, nothing special,” the officer said.
An alert has also reportedly been issued in Dehradun, Haridwar, and Udhamsinghnagar districts of the Uttarakhand as a precaution in view of the possibility of Amritpal entering the state.
Punjab Police Release 44 from Preventive Custody
Punjab Police on Friday said they have released 44 people taken into preventive custody during the crackdown on Amritpal and handed them over to their family.
“In the larger interest of the public and keeping in view that youngsters should not suffer, Punjab Police have decided to release those persons who have a minimum role or were just following Amritpal Singh on religious sentiments only," said Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Arpit Shukla, as per PTI.
On Thursday, Inspector General of Police (Headquarters) Sukhchain Singh Gill said that Punjab Police might release 177 people from preventive custody.
207 people were taken into custody for allegedly disturbing peace and harmony during the crackdown. Of them, 30 have been found involved in major criminal activities and remaining were under preventive custody, police said.
Singh addressed five gatherings in 10 days across Punjab, inciting hundreds of Sikhs to get ready for the “ultimate sacrifice" for the cause, before the police crackdown on his outfit earlier this month, officials said.
The radical preacher’s activities showed his methodical efforts to disturb peace in the state, they claimed.
Posters Put Up on Nepal Border
The Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) on Friday issued an alert and put up posters of Amritpal Singh and his aides along the border with Nepal in Uttar Pradesh to avert the possibility of the radical preacher fleeing the country via the state.
“Based on inputs from intelligence agencies that Amritpal can enter Nepal, we have issued an alert on the border. Posters with their pictures have also been put up on the border in Rupaidiha. We are closely monitoring the movement of people along the border," Tapan Das, commandant of the Sashastra Seema Bal’s (SSB) 42nd Battalion, said on Friday, as per PTI.
The Punjab Police launched a crackdown against Amritpal and elements of his Waris Punjab De outfit last week.
Amritpal, however, gave the police a slip and escaped their dragnet when his cavalcade was intercepted in the Jalandhar district. Following his escape, Amritpal changed his appearance, wore sunglasses and western attire and has been using different modes of travel.
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