Jailed gangster Lawrence Bishnoi, who is suspected to be involved in Punjabi singer Sidhu Moosewala's killing, on Wednesday moved the Punjab and Haryana High Court. Bishnoi approached the HC after withdrawing his plea from the Delhi High Court in which he had sought necessary safeguards as he apprehended a "fake encounter" by the Punjab Police.
Bishnoi was lodged in Tihar Jail in connection with a case lodged under the stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crimes Act (MCOCA) and was on Tuesday remanded in three-day custody of the Delhi Police Special Cell after it arrested him in an Arms Act case.
In his petition submitted through advocates Sangram Saraon and Shubpreet Kaur, Bishnoi sought directions that the jurisdictional magistrate in Mansa, Punjab, being restrained from handing over his custody to the investigating agency in Punjab.
The petitioner sought issuance of appropriate directions for questioning him through online/video conference facility or within the precincts of Tihar Jail, New Delhi. The petitioner submitted that there is a serious threat to his life and a possibility that upon being produced or while being brought from custody in connection with the FIR registered by the Mansa police, he can be "put to harm or liquidated by adopting extrajudicial means".
Bishnoi, 35, in his petition claimed that he was being falsely implicated in connection with the murder of singer Sidhu Moosewala. "The petitioner has been named in the FIR no-103 dated May 29, 2022, only to cover up the inadequacies in the investigation. Moreover, the petitioner is being made a scapegoat and is being erroneously held responsible," the petition said.
"In fact, even before the FIR was registered, the top most police official of Punjab Police had virtually declared the petitioner responsible for the gruesome murder on the basis of which FIR no 103 dates 29.05.2022 has been registered. In fact, the petitioner is lodged in Tihar Jail, New Delhi," said the petition. The petitioner has been falsely and erroneously named in the FIR without any tangible evidence, based on unreliable claims made on social media platforms, it further said.
Moreover, the petitioner does not have access to social media platforms or communication devices, said the petition. On May 29, Moosewala was shot dead by unidentified assailants in Punjab's Mansa district, a day after the state government curtailed his security cover.
His cousin and a friend, who were travelling in a jeep with him, were also injured in the attack. Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann has announced setting up a judicial commission headed by a sitting high court judge to probe the killing of 28-year-old Moosewala.
Shubhdeep Singh Sidhu, known as Sidhu Moosewala, was among the 424 people whose security was withdrawn or curtailed on May 28 temporarily. Punjab police chief V K Bhawra had claimed that prima facie, it seemed to be an inter-gang rivalry between the Lawrence Bishnoi group and Lucky Patial group. Canada-based gangster Goldy Brar, who is the member of the Bishnoi gang, had allegedly claimed responsibility for the murder .