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Cops had intelligence input about attack

Police had alerted Hindu leaders in the city about attack during the festival season18 Oct 2017 | 1:05 AM

LUDHIANA: Sources in the Intelligence Department have stated that the police had intelligence input that Hindu leaders in Ludhiana could be attacked anytime in the ongoing festival season.

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Nikhil Bhardwaj

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 17

Sources in the Intelligence Department have stated that the police had intelligence input that Hindu leaders in Ludhiana could be attacked anytime in the ongoing festival season. An RSS worker, Ravinder Gosain, was shot dead by two bike-borne assailants at Gagandeep Colony in Kailash Nagar this morning. Gosain, “mukhya shikshak” (head teacher) at Mohan Shakha in Amantarn Nagar, was shot dead hardly 300 metres from his house.

The sources told The Tribune that after getting the intelligence input, senior police officials here had held a meeting with Hindu leaders. The leaders were categorically told to remain vigilant as there was intelligence input that a Hindu leader in Ludhiana might be killed near Diwali or before October 20. Even the security of some Hindu leaders was also reviewed, still the Punjab police failed to prevent the attack.

The Basti Jodhewal police station is located a few metres from the house of the deceased where he was shot dead.

Yash Giri, RSS general secretary, said it was not the first case when an RSS Shakha worker was targeted. On January 19, 2016, two persons opened fire outside the RSS Shakha in Kidwai Nagar. Two persons on a motorcycle fired a single shot into the air. No one was injured though. A senior leader of the RSS, Jagdish Gagneja, was shot dead in Jalandhar last year. Had the police gathered vital clues in the previous cases, these fresh killings could have been prevented.

Punjab has witnessed major killings in the past two years and most of them took place in Ludhiana district. Already groping in the dark in the cases of high-profile killings of Hindu and religious leaders, the city police now face another daunting task. The police are linking Gosain’s killing with the previous killings of leaders, as modus operandi all cases seem to be the same.

The first major killing was reported on April 3, 2016, when Namdhari sect matriarch Chand Kaur was murdered by two bike-borne persons at Bhaini Sahib. On April 23, 2016, Shiv Sena leader Durga Prasad Gupta was shot dead in Khanna.

In Jalandhar, the RSS Prant Seh-Sanchalak (vice-president), Brig Jagdish Gagneja (retd), was shot at in the busy Jyoti Chowk market on August 6, 2016. He died at the hospital.

On January 14, 2017, Amit Sharma (35), district president of the Shri Hindu Takht, was shot dead outside Durga Mata Temple. Next month, on February 25, 2017, a Dera Sacha Sauda follower Satpal Sharma (70) and his son Ramesh Sharma (40) were shot dead by unidentified assailants at a canteen run by them at Naam Charcha Ghar in Jagera village on the Ludhiana-Malerkotla road.

As the Ludhiana police were groping in the dark in all these cases, Pastor Sultan Masih was shot dead outside Temple of Church on July 15, 2017.

Lucky Sood, a Congress leader, in a statement issued today, said the Congress government was serious about threats from anti-national forces and strict steps were being taken to tackle the menace. “I mourn the killing of RSS worker Ravinder Gosain and hope that the Ludhiana police will soon nab the culprits,” Lucky added.

BJP leader Ravinder Arora said anti-national forces wanted to vitiate peace in the state. He lambasted the city police for failing to solve the high-profile killings

Political interference to blame for poor performance of wings 

Instead of solving the high-profile killings or nabbing gangsters, investigation wings are patting their back by nabbing gamblers, bookies or snatchers. Political interference in the postings of heads of these wings, who are not professional enough to handle major assignments, is reportedly affecting the performance of these wings.

Uploaded shakha pic minutes before killing

RSS worker Ravinder Gosain had uploaded his photo with other shakha activists a few minutes before his killing. In fact, he had been uploading shakha pictures daily on his FB account. Gosain was also an RTI activist. 

Cartridges of different bores recovered

In preliminary investigation, the police recovered two cartridges and both were of different bore. The ADCP, Sandeep Garg, said though in the preliminary report it seemed that one cartridge was of .30 bore and the other of .32 bore, only the forensic report would reveal the exact bore. Since bike-borne killers were on a yellow-coloured Honda Stunner bike, with Phillaur registration number PB37 7221, the police have called for details of all such bikes from dealers across the state. Sources said the police found that the Transport Department had registered no such bike on this number.

Cops had intelligence input about attackGrieving members of deceased Ravinder Gosain’s family at Basti Jodhewal in Ludhiana on Tuesday. Tribune photo: Himanshu Mahajan
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