With the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government under the Opposition fire over spike in incidents of crime in Punjab, the Director General of Police (DGP) Punjab VK Bhawra on Monday murders this year has marginally decreased in comparison to the last two years.
Addressing a Press conference, Bhawra said crime data indicates that 158 murders have taken place in the state this year in almost 100 days making an average of 50 murders per month, while in previous years, the number of murders was 724 and 757 in 2021 and 2020 respectively making the monthly average of murders for 2021 and 2020 was 60 and 65 murders respectively.
“This is not a happy situation. Punjab Police has been making strenuous efforts to eliminate the gangster culture in the state and will continue to make efforts in this direction,” said the DGP, while soliciting the support and cooperation of the public to further bring down the crime graph.
Bhawra said taking action against organised gangs and criminals since 1 January 2022, various units of the Punjab Police have busted 16 gangster modules and arrested 98 individuals involved in these activities. A large cache of weapons have been recovered from them which includes four rifles and 68 pistols besides impounding 30 vehicles used by these criminals, he added.
The DGP said six gangster crime related murders witnessed in the state in 2022, all of which have been traced after a thorough investigation on professional lines and a total of 24 accused involved in these cases have been arrested along with a recovery of seven pistols, 18 cartridges and seven vehicles.
This apart, there were nine non-gangster related murders occurred during the year 2022 causing sensation amongst the general public which have also been traced and most of the accused have been arrested, said the DGP. He said that family or matrimonial dispute, rivalry or monetary dispute were among the main reasons behind these crimes.
The DGP said that, recently, the police has successfully managed to avert at least four serious gangster related crimes including murder of an immigration consultant, killing of a rival gang member, kidnapping of a student (son of a prominent professional) and killing of a businessman.
Bhawra said the Punjab Police has successfully identified 545 gangsters of A, B and C categories and has already taken effective action against 515 out of these along with recovery of a large number of weapons, vehicles and communication equipment.