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Unsung heroes saved many lives in Punjab terror attack

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picture from- indianexpress.com

Dinanagar (Punjab): Satpal, Darshan Kumar and Nanak Chand are no ordinary people as they are the ones who saved scores of innocent lives in this Punjab town during a terror attack.

picture from- www.abplive.in
picture from- www.abplive.in

While the limelight of the 11-hour long intense gun-battle with terrorists has been hogged by the SWAT and special units of the Punjab Police in Monday’s terror attack on Dinanagar town in Punjab’s Gurdaspur district, it was the pro-active role played by unsung heroes of this small town which saved scores of lives from the mayhem planned by the terrorists.

The death toll in the terror attack could have been many more than the figure of seven, including one police officer and three home guards personnel, had these three men and their associates not shown alertness and courage.

The terrorists, who had besieged Dinanagar town from 5.30 a.m. on Monday, had planned more casualties by wiring five live bombs on the railway track on a small bridge on the Pathankot-Amritsar railway section.

A tragedy was averted as alert railway staff detected the bombs just five minutes before a train loaded with passengers was to cross the bridge, five km from here.

“I was going to get milk from nearby as I did daily. I saw something wired to the bridge. I sent a youth to inform railway staff about the suspicious things on the bridge,” Satpal, a railway gate man, said.

“The timely detection of the bombs saved many lives,” Satpal added.

Railway employee Darshan Kumar, who was told about the suspicious items on the railway bridge, immediately asked a railway key man to run and get the passenger train stopped.

“I realized that the train had already started from the Parmanand railway station with many passengers. I asked the key man to run and stop the train. He was able to stop it in the nick of time. Otherwise, there would have been so much damage,” said Darshan Kumar, who later went about his daily duty in his khakhi uniform.

The passenger train was carrying over 250 people and the bombs were wired to the track on a small bridge over a rivulet.

“We stopped all trains on the Pathankot-Amritsar section immediately. Four trains run on this section daily. The alertness of the staff saved several lives,” a senior railway official said.

State-run Punjab Roadways bus driver Nanak Chand was another hero of the day.

Chand had never imagined that he would come face to face with terrorists in the early hours of an otherwise normal day.

The driver did not panic even when one terrorist fired at the bus, after trying to signal it to stop. Chand instead scared the terrorist by driving towards him. The firing by the terrorist left 2-3 passengers injured with gunshot wounds.

“I saw a man in army uniform with a scarf covering his face and carrying a weapon signalling me to stop. I suspected trouble as army people don’t cover their faces. I turned the bus and sped away despite the firing,” Nanak Chand said.

The driver took the bus towards Gurdaspur town, nearly 20 km away, and stopped at the civil hospital to enable the injured to get treatment. He then informed the police about the incident.

There were over 70 passengers in the bus at that time when the incident took place around 5.30 am. The bus was on its way from Bamiyal town to Chandigarh.

(IANS)

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Heroin worth Rs. 100 crore seized by BSF in Punjab

22kg heroine was recovered during a combat between Pakistani smugglers and BSF troopers

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22kg heroin seized in Punjab
BSF recovers heroine worth Rs. 100 crores from Pakistani smugglers. Wikimedia Commons.

In a joint operation, Border Security Forces (BSF) troopers and the Punjab Police have recovered 22kg of heroin in Punjab’s Ferozepur sector following exchange of fire with Pakistani smugglers near the international border, a BSF officer said on Saturday.

The encounter took place late on Friday following a tip-off that smugglers were trying to send heroin consignment into India.

At least one Pakistani smuggler was injured in the exchange of fire as blood stains were found during search of the area on Saturday, BSF officer D.S. Rajpurohit said.

The BSF recovered a pistol and one Pakistani Sim card.

The BSF also arrested three Indian smugglers who were waiting close to the border fence to collect the heroin consignment.

The smugglers were trying to smuggle the heroin consignment using a plastic pipe across the border fence.

The heroin is worth nearly Rs 110 crore in the international market.

The Ferozepur border is around 275 km from here.

Punjab shares a 553-km-long barbed-wire fenced international border with Pakistan. (IANS)

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Police Arrests Khalistani Terrorist Harminder Singh Mintoo at a Railway Station in Delhi, a day after he escaped Punjab Prison

The arrest happened within 24 hours after Mintoo, another terrorist and four gangsters broke out of the Nabha Jail in Punjab

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fence (Representational Image), Pixabay

New Delhi/Chandigarh, November 28, 2016: Khalistani terrorist Harminder Singh Mintoo was arrested at a railway station in Delhi on Monday morning, a day after he escaped from a high security prison in Punjab.

The Khalistan Liberation Force (KCF) leader was nabbed from the Nizamuddin railway station by the Special Cell of Delhi Police, Special Commissioner of Police Arvind Deep told IANS.

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“He was arrested between 1 and 2 a.m.,” Deep said. “He had reached Delhi by changing a number of buses and was headed from Nizamuddin to Panvel (in Maharashtra).”

His plan was to then travel to Goa and from there flee the country, said a senior police officer on the condition of anonymity.

According to the officer, Mintoo, after his escape, entered Haryana, where he took a bus from Kurukshetra to Panipat and then boarded another bus to reach Delhi.

An earlier report said the arrest followed a joint operation by Punjab Police and Delhi Police.

Asked if this was true, Deep said the Punjab Police had “alerted us that Mintoo might go towards Delhi.

“So we formed several teams which kept vigil at strategic locations. He was spotted by our men at the Nizamuddin station.”

The arrest happened within 24 hours after Mintoo, another terrorist and four gangsters broke out of the Nabha Jail in Punjab on Sunday morning after it was attacked by 10-12 armed men.

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Punjab Police officials had said on Sunday that the escaped prisoners had fled towards Haryana.

Mintoo was arrested in 2014 with 10 cases against him. The other terrorist who escaped on Sunday was Kashmir Singh Galwadi.

Meanwhile, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said a report had been sought from the Punjab government and promised the Centre’s assistance to nab those on the run.

“The Home Ministry has been doing whatever needs to be done,” Singh said in Delhi.

“This (jailbreak) is a state subject and the Home Ministry has already sent advisories to states in this regard. The state (Punjab) government is looking into the matter,” he said.

Mintoo would be presented in a court in Delhi and handed over to Punjab Police on transit remand.

On Sunday evening, Parminder Singh alias Pamma Singh, one of the alleged gunmen who carried out the sensational jailbreak, was caught in Shamli district in Uttar Pradesh.

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The attackers, dressed in police uniform, breached the prison security around 9 a.m. and fired at least 100 rounds during the well-planned attack that lasted barely 10 minutes.

After the jailbreak, a police team shot dead a woman travelling in a car which failed to stop at a barricade. (IANS)

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Radical Sikh leaders arrested by Punjab police

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Photo: http://www.hindustantimes.com

Amritsar: Radical Sikh leaders from in and around Amritsar in Punjab were arrested to prevent a religious showdown at the Golden Temple complex on Wednesday, police sources said.

Mokham Singh, separatist leader and former IPS officer Simranjit Singh Mann and Amrik Singh Ajnala were arrested late Tuesday, the sources said on Wednesday.

While Mokham Singh and Mann were taken to a police station here, Ajnala was put under house arrest.

The arrests came within hours of a ‘Sarbat Khalsa’ (grand assembly of Sikhs) congregation at Chaba near Amritsar on Tuesday in which controversial decisions, including the sacking of jathedars (chiefs) of three takhts (temporal seats) of Sikh religion, were taken and convicted Khalistani terrorist Jagtar Singh Hawara was named as the Akal Takht chief.

“The Punjab Police arrested the top radical leaders to prevent any untoward situation at the Golden Temple complex and other gurdwaras as the newly announced heads of the takhts would have tried to take over,” a senior Punjab Police officer told IANS.

Deepening the crisis within Sikh religious affairs, radical Sikhs on Tuesday had announced the “appointment” of Hawara, the main accused in the assassination of then Punjab chief minister Beant Singh, who was killed by a human bomb in Chandigarh on August 31, 1995, as the Akal Takht jathedar.

The congregation of radicals also announced the “removal” of all Sikh high priests, including the present Akal Takht Jathedar Gurbachan Singh.

Hawara is serving a life term in the Beant Singh assassination case and is lodged in Chandigarh’s high-security Burail jail. Hawara was involved in a sensational jailbreak from the same prison in January 2004 with two other terrorists after digging a 104-feet long tunnel. He was arrested later by the Delhi Police.

During the congregation, in view of Hawara being in prison, the leaders announced that former MP Dhian Singh Mand would be the interim jathedar of the Akal Takht and would address the Sikh community from the shrine, located inside the Golden Temple complex, on Diwali on Wednesday.

The congregation was organized by a few radical Sikh groups.

Accusing them of “genocide of Sikhs”, the congregation named former police chief K.P.S. Gill and Operation Bluestar commander K.S. Brar, both Sikhs themselves, as ‘tankhaiya’ (the person guilty of religious misconduct) and directed them to appear before the Akal Takht by November 20.

The congregation also announced the disbanding the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), the mini-parliament of Sikhs, and said that fresh elections for the SGPC would be held.

The congregation was attended by nearly 50,000 people, including Congress party leaders and radical Sikhs.

(IANS)