Chandigarh, March 21
Khalistan sympathiser Amritpal Singh, wanted by the Punjab Police, had hidden himself in a gurdwara before he changed into western attire from long kurta and fled, said Punjab Police spokesperson IG Sukhchain Singh Gill in Chandigarh on Tuesday.
Giving details, Gill said Amritpal hid in a gurdwara in Mangal Ambian village. He then swapped his traditional religious clothes for shirt and trousers and also switched his turban before making his getaway on a bike.
During the press conference, Gill also released Amritpal’s photos in different attire and form.
Amritpal was initially in his Mercedes vehicle but later switched to Brezza sports utility vehicle during police action against him on Saturday. In a new photo that appeared on social media, Amritpal Singh could be seen riding pillion on a bike wearing a pink turban and black goggles, suggesting that he tried to change his appearance to get away from the eyes of police. In a CCTV footage, he could be seen sitting on the bike.
In another CCTV footage of the Jalandhar toll plaza, which appeared on social media on Tuesday, showed Amritpal Singh escaping in the Brezza SUV.
Thousands of policemen and security personnel have been looking for the Khalistani leader for the past four days.
Amritpal’s associates—Manpreet Singh, Gurdeep Singh, Harpreet Singh, Gurbhej Singh— have been arrested. Swords, walkie-talkie sets and a .315 bore gun was recovered from them.
They helped the fugitive escape in a sports utility vehicle. During their questioning, it came to the fore that Amritpal Singh went to a gurdwara in Nangal Ambian village in Jalandhar, police said.
“There he changed his clothes, and wore a shirt and pant, and escaped along with three others on two bikes,” said Gill.
Gill also informed that 154 arrests have been made so far in the case.
5 people booked under NSA have been sent to Assam’s Dibrugarh jail. Amritpal was also booked under NSA on Tuesday. So far, NIA has not been involved in the probe, said the IG.
Gill said the situation is completely peaceful in Punjab and Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann has been monitoring the situation and taking regular feedback from police officers.
He said the police officials are getting all support from states and central agencies in this case.
The IG said a protest by a group of Nihangs in support of Amritpal Singh near gurdwara Shaheedan in Sohana in Mohali has now ended and the road is open for traffic. With inputs