Punjab police averts another likely terrorist attack; highly radicalised operative held with hand grenades, pistols

CHANDIGARH, November 24:

With the arrest of a highly radicalised operative identified as Ranjit Singh of village Sohal in Tarn Taran, linked with foreign based terrorist entities, Punjab Police foiled another possible terrorist attack in the border state. The police have also recovered two Chinese made P-86 hand grenades and two pistols along with live cartridges besides a black coloured Royal Enfield motorcycle bearing registration number PB02-DA-6685 from his possession, said Director General of Police (DGP) Punjab Iqbal Preet Singh Sahota here on Wednesday.

The DGP said that acting on intelligence inputs about the presence of Ranjit Singh in the area of Amritsar, special teams from SSOC Amritsar were sent to the specified area to spot the suspect and Ranjit Singh was apprehended.

This development came at a moment when Punjab has been witnessing huge inflow of hand grenades and tiffin bombs along with other weapons. Recently, the state has also seen a couple of grenade blasts including at CIA Nawanshahr and Cantonment area in Pathankot besides the recovery of an unexploded hand grenade from Zira area.

DGP Iqbal Preet Singh Sahota said that, during investigation, Ranjit revealed that he had formed a group named “Kaum De Rakhe” to collect funds on the pretext of social work and through this group, he got in touch with various radical and terrorist elements based in UK and other countries through social media and extended his help to form sleeper cells under the garb of his social work. Ranjit further disclosed that recently he had received a consignment of arms and explosives, and was planning to carry out a terror strike to create an atmosphere of fear and lawlessness in the border state, he said.

The DGP said that Ranjit was also part of a group, which had vandalised statues of folk dancers installed at the heritage street leading to Golden Temple Amritsar on January 15, 2020. Ranjit was arrested by the police in a statue vandalising case and was presently on bail, he added.

ADGP Internal Security RN Dhoke said that further efforts are being made to ascertain the identity of the UK end, who had arranged the consignment and also his other Indian associates.

Meanwhile, FIR number 24 dated 23.11.2021 has been registered under sections 25 of the Arms Act, sections 3, 4 and 5 of the Explosive Substances Amendment Act and sections 120 and 120-B of the Indian Penal Act at Police Station SSOC Amritsar.

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