Khalistani preacher Amritpal Singh arrested, sent to Assam jail

Radical preacher Amritpal Singh

Dibrugarh: Radical preacher Amritpal Singh, who was arrested on Sunday, was flown in a special flight from Punjab to Assam and lodged in Dibrugarh Central Jail here, officials said.

A heavily-guarded convoy reached the prison with Singh, who arrived at the Dibrugarh airport around 2:20 pm from Bathinda, a senior official told PTI.

“He has been kept in a special cell under tight security. A team from Punjab Police is present in the jail along with personnel of Assam Police,” he said.

The Assam Police has not yet made any official statement on the development. A multi-tier security arrangement has been made at the Central Jail, the official said.

“The jail compound has been surrounded by Assam Police’s elite Black Cat Commandos, CRPF and other security personnel,” he said.

Dibrugarh Central Jail was constructed in 1859-60 by the British on 15.54 acres of land. It is one of the oldest and well-fortified prisons, officials said.

Altogether, nine of Singh’s associates are also lodged in the jail.

Security in and around the jail premises has been beefed up since March 19, when four members of the ‘Waris Punjab De’ (WPD) were brought here in the first batch.

Earlier in the day, Singh was arrested by the Punjab Police from Rode village in the northern state, after remaining absconding for more than a month.

Addressing a press conference in Chandigarh, Punjab Police Inspector General Sukhchain Singh Gill said Amritpal Singh would be taken to Dibrugarh under the National Security Act (NSA).

A few pictures of Amritpal Singh, while being taken into custody, surfaced on social media and in these, he could be seen a wearing traditional white robe.

In a video circulated online, he is purportedly addressing a gathering at a gurudwara, and says he is surrendering.

Amritpal Singh had been on the run since March 18 when a police crackdown was launched against him and members of his outfit ‘Waris Punjab De’. The Punjab Police had invoked the stringent National Security Act (NSA) against the Khalistan sympathiser.

Several cases have been lodged against Amritpal Singh and his associates for allegedly spreading disharmony, attempt to murder, attack on police personnel and obstructing the lawful discharge of duty by public servants.

(With inputs from PTI)

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