Uncertainty Surrounds Arrest of Radical Sikh Preacher Amritpal Singh in Punjab
High-Speed Chase Leads to Arrests, While Amritpal Singh Remains at Large
Chandigarh, March 18 (IANS) - The whereabouts of radical Sikh preacher and Khalistani sympathizer Amritpal Singh remain uncertain after he evaded arrest during a high-speed chase involving Punjab police, according to officials. Although seven individuals accompanying him were detained, Amritpal Singh, the leader of 'Waris Punjab De,' managed to escape by switching vehicles during the pursuit. The number of arrested individuals linked to Amritpal Singh has risen to 78.
Some police officials have reported that Amritpal Singh has been located in Sarih village in Nakodar tehsil, Jalandhar district, where he was persuaded to surrender. A house-to-house search operation is ongoing, with central paramilitary forces involved in the search.
Internet services across Punjab have been suspended as a precautionary measure, and supporters of Amritpal Singh have shared videos of the police chase in Moga district. In anticipation of possible unrest, a large paramilitary force was deployed near his native village, Jallupur Khaira, in Amritsar district.
A special police team from seven districts trailed Amritpal Singh's convoy while he was en route to Jalandhar's Shahkot tehsil. Despite closing in on his vehicles multiple times, Amritpal Singh managed to escape. Section 144 has been imposed in numerous districts across the state, and security has been heightened. Vehicle checks are being conducted at the Punjab-Haryana border.
Amritpal Singh, a 30-year-old pro-Khalistan propagator, faces three pending cases, including two for delivering hate speeches. He has been compared to Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale due to his appearance and attire.
Previously, on February 23, an armed mob led by Amritpal Singh clashed with police near Amritsar, demanding the release of a colleague arrested in an alleged kidnapping case. Six officers were injured in the confrontation.
As the internet suspension continues, Punjab Police urge residents to maintain peace and avoid spreading panic, fake news, or hate speech. Congress MP Ravneet Singh Bittu commented on Amritpal Singh's evasion, criticizing him for running away from the police.