Published On: Mon, Mar 20th, 2023

Amritpal Singh may be handed over to NIA once nabbed

New Delhi: Pro-Khalistan fugitive Amritpal Singh may be handed over to the National Investigation Agency (NIA) if and when he is arrested by the Punjab police, said sources on Monday.

Section 144 has been imposed in many districts of the state

“There is a terror link connected to Pakistan`s ISI and therefore the Home Ministry can decide to transfer the case to the NIA,” the source said.

Punjab Police is also planning to book Amritpal Singh under the provisions of the National Security Act (NSA), sources privy to the development said sources.

In the interest of public safety, the Punjab government has extended the suspension of SMS and mobile internet services, except voice calls, till Monday noon. Amritsar Deputy Commissioner of Police, Parminder Singh Bhandal, told the media that the police have set up 100 checkpoints in Amritsar and its outskirts to physically check vehicles. CRPF jawans are accompanying the policemen at the checkpoints.

Anticipating a disturbance of peace, a large contingent of paramilitary force has been deployed outside Amritpal Singh`s native village, Jallupur Khaira in the Amritsar district.

A special team of police, comprising personnel from seven districts, had followed the separatist leader`s convoy while he was on his way to Jalandhar`s Shahkot tehsil on Saturday.

“Amritpal`s vehicle was chased for 20-25 km. His vehicle was at the front. However, he managed to escape by changing his vehicle,” Police Commissioner Kuldeep Singh Chahal said.

Section 144 has been imposed in many districts of the state. The police have also increased security across Punjab. In addition, all vehicles are being checked on the Punjab-Haryana border.

Meanwhile, Amritpal`s father, Tarsem Singh, has told the media that the police should have arrested him before he left the house. “We don`t have any information about his whereabouts. They carried out a search at our residence for 3-4 hours, but did not find anything illegal,” he said.

Amritpal Singh’s lawyer Khara also alleged that the police wants to kill him in a “fake encounter”. Citing a threat to the life of Amritpal Singh, Advocate Khara has approached Punjab and Haryana High Court and filed a writ petition.

Meanwhile, security agencies had raised a red flag after intelligence inputs suggested that pro-Khalistan fugitive Amritpal Singh was using drug de-addiction centres and a gurdwara for stockpiling weapons and preparing youths to carry out suicide attacks, officials said on Sunday.

A thick dossier prepared with inputs from various security agencies claimed that Singh, who returned from Dubai last year allegedly at the behest of Pakistan’s ISI and Khalistan sympathisers residing overseas, was mainly engaged in brainwashing youths to become “khadkoos” or human bombs.

The Punjab Police launched a massive crackdown on Saturday and arrested over hundred activists and supporters of the ‘Waris Punjab De’ outfit headed by Amritpal.

According to experts and officials monitoring the situation in Punjab, Pakistan, which is going through its worst economic phase and lost all the wars fought against India, is trying its best to divert the attention of its people by planting stooges like Amritpal Singh inside India.

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