Punjab Congress president Amarinder Singh Raja Warring said Punjab has no surplus water to share, so no question of conducting a survey arises.
With the arrest of seven persons including a man who planted an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) in the car of Punjab Police Sub-Inspector in Amritsar, Director General of Police (DGP) Gaurav Yadav on Saturday said that it is yet another case of terrorist-gangster nexus to disturb peace in the border state as it turned out to be the handiwork of Canada-based gangster Lakhbir Singh alias Landa.
On 16 August, two unknown motorcycle-borne persons planted an IED under the SUV Bolero (PB02-CK-0800) of SI Dilbag Singh parked outside his residence in the area of C-Block, Ranjit Avenue, Amritsar. The mobile phone-triggering IED weighing about 2.79 kilograms and carrying about 2.17-kilogram high explosives was recovered from the spot by the local police.
The arrested man who planted the prefabricated IED under the car has been identified as Deepak (22) of village Patti in Tarn Taran, while six other arrested persons who had provided logistic, technical and financial support have been identified as Harpal Singh, who is a Constable with the Punjab Police and Fatehdeep Singh, both residents of village Sabra in Tarn Taran, Rajinder Kumar alias Bau of Harike in Tarn Taran, Khushalbir Singh alias Chittu, Varinder Singh alias Abu and Gurpreet Singh alias Gopi, trio residents of Bhikhiwind.
Varinder and Gopi, who were lodged in the Goindwal Jail and are close aides of Landa, had roped in Khushalbir to retrieve the IED from the designated spot. The police have also recovered a motorcycle (PB38E2670) used by Deepak for planting IED and five mobile phones from the accused persons, besides recovering Rs 2.52 lakh cash and foreign currency from the possession of Fatehdeep and Harpal.
The DGP said that Amritsar Commissionerate Police got its first break in the case with the arrest of Harpal and Fatehdeep from the Delhi International Airport on the very next day of the incident when both were trying to abscond to the Maldives.
The questioning of arrested persons further revealed the involvement of Rajinder Bau, who fled to Shirdi after he failed to flee from India in the absence of a second Covid-19 vaccination certificate, he said, adding that Bau was arrested with the assistance of Mumbai Police on August 20.
Further investigations in the case established the role of two jail inmates Varinder and Gurpreet, who on directives of Canada-based terrorist Lakhbir Landa had arranged for Khushalbir Chittu for retrieving the IED along with Fatehdeep and handing over to Deepak and his accomplice, who finally planted it under SI’s vehicle, Yadav said, while adding that Khushalbir was arrested on August 21.
The DGP said that Khushalbir along with Fatehdeep had gone to fetch the IED from the spot pinpointed by Landa, who was also navigating them to the location via video chat. “On 16 August morning, on the instructions of Landa, Harpal, Fatehdeep, and Rajinder Bau went to the Ranjit Avenue area to ensure that everything was right to detonate the IED,” he said while adding that Landa was monitoring the entire operation by getting inputs from the trio.
The DGP said that Deepak, Fatehdeep, Rajinder Bau, and Harpal had no criminal records and were lured by Landa to commit terror activities with a promise to settle them abroad illegally, specifically in Canada via other countries.
Commissioner of Police (CP), Amritsar, Arun Pal Singh said that the police have also identified the accomplice of Deepak, who accompanied him on a motorcycle to plant the IED, besides identifying the owner of the motorcycle and a person who arranged the motorcycle. “Police teams are on a manhunt to arrest the remaining accused persons and soon they will be behind the bars,” he added.
Meanwhile, Constable Harpal will be dismissed from service for his role in terrorist activities. A case under sections of the Explosives Substance Act has been registered at Police Station Ranjit Avenue in Amritsar City.
Who is Landa?
Lakhbir Landa (33), who is a native of Tarn Taran and fled to Canada in 2017, had also conspired in the Rocket Propelled Grenade (RPG) terror attack at the Punjab Police Intelligence Headquarters in Mohali. He is considered to be the close aide of Pakistan-based wanted gangster Harvinder Singh alias Rinda, who had joined hands with Babbar Khalsa International (BKI).