Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, November 7
The Punjab Police on Tuesday claimed to have solved most of the cases of targeted killings, including the sensational Gagneja case, with the arrest of four persons.
Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh said a major conspiracy to fan communal disturbances and destabilise the state, hatched by the ISI in Pakistan and other countries, was unearthed.
Though the state government had handed over the case of the killing of RSS state vice-president Brig Jagdish Gagneja (retd) to the CBI, the state police had cracked this case too with the busting of a terror module, Capt Amarinder claimed.
Last month’s murder case of another RSS leader, Ravinder Gosain, has also been solved with these arrests, which have been linked to most of the cases of targeted killings that have taken place in Ludhiana, Khanna and Jalandhar since January 2016, the Chief Minister told a press conference, citing police investigations and interrogation of the suspects.
The conspirators who have been arrested include a gangster, Dharmendra alias Guggni, lodged in Nabha jail, the CM added.
Giving details, Capt Amarinder said the interrogation of the four conspirators showed that they had met and been trained in various places abroad and had been using encrypted mobile software/apps for communication with handlers based in Pakistan and some western countries.
The ISI was always looking out to disturb the country’s peace, said the CM in response to a question, asserting that the state government would not allow the peace and harmony of Punjab to be disrupted.
Amarinder said it was evident from the investigations that the targeted killings were aimed at fanning communal disturbances to further ISI’s anti-India game-plan since there were strong indications of the active involvement of Pakistani intelligence operatives based in Pak and foreign soil.
Three of the suspects have been identified as Jimmy Singh, a Jammu resident who recently returned to India from UK after spending many years there, and was picked up a week ago from Delhi’s IGI airport, Jagtar Singh Johal alias Jaggi, a UK national who got married just last month and was apprehended in Jalandhar; Dharmender alias Guggni, a gangster from Meharban in Ludhiana who was supplying weapons to the killers.
The fourth culprit, who was the main shooter in the various cases, was caught this afternoon and details about him could not be disclosed at this juncture as his interrogation was still continuing, said the Chief Minister, adding that the police had both forensic and ballistic evidence against him.
DGP Suresh Arora said the assailants were leaving behind their footprints with every case. Similar weapons were used in Durga Das and Brig Jagdish Gagneja (Jalandhar) cases, as were done in Amit Sharma case in Ludhiana.
Investigations also showed that the same kind of weapons were used in the February 2017 Khanna killings of DSS follower Satpal Kumar and his son, July 2017 Ludhiana killing of Christian Pastor Sultan Masih and last month’s Ludhiana murder of RSS leader Ravinder Gosain.
In fact, the same kind of weapons were also used in the Ludhiana RSS Shakha case of January 2016 and Amit Arora murder case of February 2016, said the DGP, adding that the weapons used by the criminals in all the eight cases were standard 9mm, .32 and .30 bore pistols.
The DGP attributed the success in busting the terrorist module to the team effort of the intelligence and counter-intelligence wings as well as the district police of Batala and Moga. The team consisted of Intelligence IG Amit Prasad, DIG (Counter-Intelligence) Ranbir Khatra, Moga SSP Ranjit Singh, SSP Batala Opinderjit Ghuman, SP Rajinder Singh, SP Wazir Singh, DSPs Sulakhan Singh and Sarabjit Singh, Inspector, CIA Moga, Kikar Singh and ASI Haripal.
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