Punjab Police deny British NRI was tortured

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Chandigarh– Rejecting allegations of torture of British national Jagtar Singh Johal, arrested in the cases of targeted killings of Hindu leaders, the Punjab Police said on Sunday that due process of law was followed at every stage and the accused was allowed access to his counsel, family members and British consular officers.

“Not only did it have sufficient evidence to prove the complicity of Jagtar alias Jaggi in the cases of targeted killings, the police had also ensured that there was no violation of his rights at any stage,” a police spokesperson said on Sunday, trashing allegations of a frame-up and torture.

Johal (Jaggi), a British national of Indian origin who was arrested by the Punjab Police recently after a terror module, allegedly involved in targeted killings of Hindu leaders in the past two years, was busted, has got support from political leaders in Britain and Canada who have urged Indian authorities to get him released.

“Besides being allowed to talk to his family members after his arrest, Jaggi was produced before a Judicial Magistrate within 24 hours of his arrest as laid down under the Criminal Procedure Code. The British High Commission was duly informed about the arrest of Jaggi, whose medical examination was also conducted as required under the procedure,” the spokesperson said.

The British Deputy High Commissioner in Chandigarh was in touch with Punjab’s Director General of Police, said the spokesperson, adding that the envoy did not question the arrest of Jaggi.

“Jaggi has been found by the police to be a staunch supporter of terrorist activities in Punjab,” the spokesperson said.

The spokesperson added that there was a huge pile of evidence against Jaggi, who had been produced before the court several times and taken on police remand as per the court’s orders, before he was sent on judicial remand to Faridkot Jail on November 17.

“Jaggi’s medical examination has also been conducted regularly since his arrest from Dakoha Fatak in Jalandhar on November 4,” said the spokesperson, adding that his family members and relatives were allowed to meet him.

“Further, on November 15, Jagpreet Singh Chaddha, a lawyer, met Jaggi between 8 and 9 p.m. The next day, a team from the UK High Commission in New Delhi, comprising Margaret Partridge and Amit Kotecha, consular officers, met Jagtar Singh,” the spokesperson said.

Giving details of Jaggi’s involvement in conspiracy, coordination, funding and arranging of weapons for members of the Khalistan Liberation Force (KLF) module busted in connection with the targeted killings, the spokesperson said the accused came in contact with Gursharanbir Singh, also a British national based in Coventry, UK, who was involved in the killing of Rulda Singh, President of Rashtriya Sikh Sangat, Punjab, in July 2009.

“Jaggi came in contact with Harmeet Singh alias Ph.D, a Pakistan-based KLF terrorist, and Taljeet Singh alias Jimmy of Glasgow, Scotland (arrested on October 30, 2017 for being a KLF module member) for funding and sourcing of weapons.

“Jimmy went to the UK on study visa in 2012 but had overstayed illegally in Glasgow after the expiry of the visa in 2014,” the spokesperson said.

“In March 2016, Harmeet Singh asked Jaggi to arrange locally-made pistols for his module members in Punjab. In April 2016, Jaggi further asked Taljeet Singh Jimmy to supply pistols with the help of his acquaintances in Jammu.

“Jaggi paid 3,000 pounds to Jimmy in Glasgow in November 2016 for weapons, which Jimmy arranged to have dumped near a milestone, on way to Zaffarwal (Gurdaspur),” he said.

He said the Canada-based militant leaders Gurpreet Singh (Vancouver) and Gurjeet Cheema (Toronto) had supplied the second pistol to other module members Gurpreet Singh Peet (Faridkot) and Simaranjit Singh alias Nikka (Moga) in May/June 2017.

“There was sufficient evidence to show that Jaggi had conspired with Gursharanbir Singh of UK and Pakistan-based Harmeet for carrying out the targeted killings of Hindu leaders and others in 2016-17.

“Jaggi had remained in touch with Gursharanbir Singh and Harmeet and was privy to the selection of targets, raising module members and provisioning of weapons with the help of gangster Dharminder Singh alias Gugni.

“It is pertinent to mention here that Gugni had supplied the weapons to module members with the help of his known local weapon suppliers based in UP and Bihar,” the spokesperson said.

“Jaggi, along with his family members, went to Surrey, Canada, in August 2016, and met militant elements Satinderpal Singh Gill, Maninder Singh Bual and Parupkar Singh in Surrey, British Columbia.

“Gursharanbir Singh from UK also came to Surrey and Jaggi met him to discuss ways of reviving militancy in Punjab,” said the spokesperson. (IANS)



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