The decisive war against anti-social elements launched on the directions of Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann has dealt a major blow to ISI-backed terror module jointly handled by Canada-based gangster Lakhbir Singh alias Landa and Pakistan-based Gangster Harvinder Singh Rinda. The Punjab Police has arrested their three close-aides, besides, identifying at least another 25 accomplices who were aiding them in carrying out illegal activities across Punjab and adjoining states, said Director General of Police (DGP) Punjab Gaurav Yadav here on Thursday.
The DGP said that the arrested persons include the prime perpetrator of planting Improvised Explosive Device (IED) in the Shahabad area of Kurukshetra in Haryana recently, who has been identified as Nachhatar Singh alias Moti of village Bhattal Sehja Singh in Tarn Taran. This terror module was busted by the Haryana Police.
The other two arrested accused persons have been identified as Sukhdev Singh alias Shera of village Gandiwind and Harpreet Singh alias Happy alias Billa of village Naushera Pannuan in Tarn Taran, he added.
The Police have also recovered one Improvised Explosive Device (IED) containing RDX weighing 1.5Kg along with detonator, two pistols including .30 bore and .315 bore along with eight live cartridges, and a Splendor motorcycle without a registration number from their possession.
As per the preliminary investigations, the DGP said it has been revealed that the trio of accused persons were in direct contact with Lakhbir Landa, and were involved in extortion and cross-border smuggling of arms, explosives, and drugs at a large scale.
The development came amid the ongoing war against drugs and gangsters waged by the Punjab Police on the directions of Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann to make Punjab a drug-free and crime-free state.
Divulging more details, SSP Tarn Taran Ranjit Singh Dhillon said that following reliable inputs, the Police team from Sarhali Police Station conducted Naka and managed to arrest three accused persons after recovering two pistols from their possession. Later, on the disclosures of Nachhatar Singh, the Police teams also recovered an IED concealed on the outskirts of Rattoke village in Tarn Taran, he said.
The SSP said that the Landa-Rinda gang has a network of around 40-50 people, of which, the Police have already identified as many as 25 operatives of the gang and a manhunt has been launched to nab them. He said that further investigations are on, and more recoveries of arms and explosives are expected.
Meanwhile, FIR no. 142 has been registered under section 389 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), sections 25(6), 26(7)(i), 4 and 5 of the Explosives Act, and 21, 31-59-85 of the NDPS Act at Police Station Sarhali in Tarn Taran.
WHO IS LANDA?
Landa (33), who is native of Tarn Taran and fled to Canada in 2017, had conspired the Rocket Propelled Grenade (RPG) terror attack at Punjab Police Intelligence Headquarters in Mohali and had also planted an IED beneath the Sub-Inspector Dilbag Singh’s car in Amritsar. 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).