Chandigarh: Wanted pro-Khalistani preacher Amritpal Singh’s right- hand man Pappalpreet Singh was arrested by the Punjab police from near Hoshiarpur in the state on Monday.
Papalpreet’s arrest operation brings the police closer to catching Amritpal Singh who is believed to be hiding in Punjab. Pappalpreet was finally nabbed on a joint operation conducted by Punjab Police and its counter-intelligence unit.
Since the recovery of a Scorpio near a religious ‘dera’ in Hoshiarpur, Punjab police have been keeping a watch in the area. AIG Mahal and his counterintelligence team of the Jalandhar unit chased Amritpal Singh and Papalpreet Singh from Anandpur Sahib after they entered Punjab from Himachal Pradesh on March 28. The duo dodged the police and entered a Gurdwara to give police a slip under cover of darkness. Amritpal and Pappalpreet had separated at this place.
An educated radical, Papalpreet hailed from a village in Hoshiarpur and enjoyed goodwill among the poor peasantry whom he supported financially. Police believe the recent videos released by Amritpal calling upon Jathedar of Akal Takht to summon a Sarbat Khalsa on Baisakhi day was a brainchild of Pappalpreet Singh.
Both Amritpal and Papalpreet had escaped the police dragnet on March 18 travelling in an Endeavour SUV which was later recovered. The two gave a tough time to the Punjab police with a lot of criticism from people around the world turning it out to be a major embarrassment for the Bhagwant Mann government.
The Punjab Police had tightened its vigil across Punjab ahead of Baisakhi celebrations and rumours that Amritpal Singh was about to make a public announcement.
Incidentally, DGP Gaurav Yadav today visited Harmandir Sahib, Amritsar to pay obeisance and soon after Pappalpreet was arrested.