NIA conducts searches in UP, Punjab over extortion by Khalistanis

Agency sleuths carried out searches at nine locations in Barnala, Moga, and Ferozepur in Punjab and Meerut and Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh

New Delhi: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Thursday carried out searches at nine locations in Uttar Pradesh and Punjab in connection with the case relating to extortion by Khalistani terrorists.

An NIA spokesperson said agency sleuths carried out searches at nine locations in Barnala, Moga, and Ferozepur in Punjab and Meerut and Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh in connection with a case it registered related to threats and extorting money by Khalistani terrorists at Mehna and Moga in Punjab.

A case was registered in Punjab’s Moga district in May this year relating to information received by Punjab Police that Arshdeep Singh alias Arash, a resident of Moga, Charanjit Singh alias Rinku, a resident of Barnala and Ramandeep Singh alias Jajj, a resident of Ferozepur, all currently residing abroad, had formed a gang and were threatening and extorting money from people.

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NIA had taken over the probe on June 10. The official said that during investigation, three accused persons have been arrested and arms and ammunitions have been recovered at the instance of the arrested. The official said that Arshdeep Singh is a close associate of Hardeep Singh alias Nijjar, chief of Khalistan Tiger Force (KTF), who has been declared a designated terrorist by the Indian government.

“As per Hardeep Singh’s directions, Arshdeep Singh had formed this terrorist gang comprising gangsters and shooters based in Punjab and Uttar Pradesh,” the official said, adding that the arrested accused persons have killed three businessmen and targeted entities based in Punjab and they had identified other targets as well.

The official said that during searches conducted at Beehla in Barnala, Dala in Moga, Ghall Khurd and Satiawala in Ferozepur in Punjab, and Hastinapur and Udyawali in Uttar Pradesh, empty bullet cartridges, one polybag containing 122 grams of narcotic substance, digital devices including compact drives, mobile phones, SIM cards and many incriminating documents have been recovered.

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