Chandigarh, August 17
Acting on tip-off by the Punjab Police, two terrorists associated with the Babbar Khalsa International (BKI) have been arrested by the Uttar Pradesh police from Unnao and Lucknow, for their involvement in a series of targeted killings of so-called `anti-Panthic elements.’
While the most wanted Jaswant Singh @ Kala, r/o Sonewala village (PS Sadar, Sri Muktsar Sahib) was apprehended on Thursday morning near Bhalla Farm House, village Sora Mau, district Unnao (UP), Baba Babwant Singh r/o Naushera Pannuan (Tarn Taran district) was nabbed on Wednesday night from Nadan Mahal road in the old City area of Lucknow.
Jaswant Singh @ Kala is a close associate of Jagtar Singh Hawara, former BKI Chief in India, who had been arrested for the assassination of Beant Singh, former Chief Minister, Punjab.
Both the terrorists have been remanded to 2-day transit police remand. A Punjab Police team from Nawanshaher district, which reached Lucknow around 6 am today, is bringing them back to Punjab for further investigations.
According to a Punjab Police spokesperson, Jaswant Singh @ Kala had masterminded the
killings of Paras Mani, a religious leader & head of Dera Baba Farid at Khukhrana village (district Moga) on June 14, 2014, besides the killings of Gurdev Singh, a Dera Sacha Sauda follower, in village Burj Jawahar Singh Wala (district Faridkot) on June 13 last year. He was also behind the killing of Baba Lakha Singh @ Lakhwinder Singh @ Pakhandi Baba, a controversial religious preacher, in Hanumangarh district (Rajasthan) on November 23, 2016, said the spokesperson.
Investigations have revealed that Jaswant Kala had set up a terrorist module comprising Gurpreet Singh @ Gopi, village Kohala (Ferozepur, Avtar Singh @ Pamma, r/o village Kohala, PS Mallanwala (Ferozepur) and Ashok Kumar Vohra @ Amna Seth r/o village Kohala, PS Mallanwala (Ferozepur). The three were arrested earlier by Punjab Police in intelligence-led co-ordinated operations for their involvement in the targeted killings.
According to the spokesperson, Baba Babwant Singh, who keeps moving between his deras in Tanda on Dasuya-Tanda road in Hoshiarpur, Punjab, and another in Lucknow, had supplied weapons to Jaswant Singh @ Kala. Jaswant, in turn, supplied these weapons to members of the terrorist modules to carry out the targeted killings and attacks on socio-religious leaders. Babwant was also providing shelter and safe houses to Jaswant Singh @ Kala and his associates before and after the criminal acts.
There are seven criminal cases registered against Jaswant between 2002-07, and he was
arrested by Special Cell of Delhi Police in 2008 in case FIR no.77/2007, u/s 121-A,120-B IPC, 25 Arms Act and 17/18/20/38/39 of Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, for involvement in the conspiracy to kill Baba Piara Singh Bhaniara. A .30 Star make Pistol had been recovered from Kala at that time. Another half a dozen criminal cases stand registered against Jaswant Kala in Punjab, including under various sections of Arms Act and Explosive Substances Act.
Baba Babwant came to the notice of the police while promoting secession from India- ‘India out of Khalistan’ on his Facebook profile. He was also found uploading photographs of Jarnail Singh Bhindranwala, Avtar Singh Brahma (KLF), Balwant Singh Rajoana (BKI) and Nihang Baba Avtar Singh Bidhichandia of Sur Singh Wala on his Facebook account.