Chandigarh, March 24
The Punjab Police today claimed to have found video footage that showed some members of “Anandpur Ki Fauj” (AKF), the private militia formed by fugitive pro-Khalistan activist and ‘Waris Punjab De’ chief Amritpal Singh, undergoing arms training.
Punjab Police spokesperson IG Sukhchain Singh Gill said the training was being imparted in a riverine area, probably near Amritpal’s native village Jallupur Khera in Baba Bakala tehsil of Amritsar.
Addressing the media here, Gill said, “The footage of firing of weapons was recovered from the phone of (Amritpal’s aide) Tejinder Singh, alias Gorkha Baba, of Khanna who was arrested today. We have also recovered AKF logo and some other sensitive videos, details of which cannot be shared at this juncture. But the arms training indicates Amritpal was preparing for something big.” He said the Punjab Police along with their counterparts from several states and central security agencies were on the trail of Amritpal, who is learnt to have been last spotted in Kurukshetra. He said of the 207 Amritpal’s associates arrested so far, only 30 were serious offenders. “The police are not indulging in any witch-hunting or false implication. The misguided youth, some of whom are too young to understand the implications and consequences of their actions, will be treated compassionately. We have put 177 of the 207 arrested under simple preventive custody and they will be released soon,” the IG said.
Asked whether accountability would be fixed in the Punjab Police for Amritpal’s escape, he said they were currently focusing only on his arrest. On how could he have escaped despite police barricades and massive force on his trail, Gill said Amritpal changed his attire and took different vehicles while moving in the dark on lesser busy paths or abandoned bridges.