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Punjab police did not take my call seriously, says Gurdaspur SP

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Punjab Superintendent of Police (SP) Salwinder Singh on Tuesday said his timely information ahead of the attack on the IAF base in Pathankot alerted security agencies and prevented a major terror strike.

The SP had claimed he was abducted by five heavily armed men as he was returning after visiting a shrine on December 31 night. Senior police officers were allegedly wary of his claim on his abduction.

The SP said his sports utility vehicle was stopped and he and two others abducted around 11.30 pm on Thursday night (December 31). The attack at the Indian Air Force base took place around 3.30 a.m. on Saturday (January 2).

“My information was 1,000 percent true. There is no doubt about it. After I was dumped by my captors I freed myself and went to a nearby village Golpur Simbli. I told the villagers who I was. I then called up my superiors and gave them the information on my abduction.

“My information prevented a major (terror) incident. They could have done big damage had I not told about my abduction,” Salwinder told the media here.

Salwinder Singh, who is under transfer from the border district of Gurdaspur, said he had informed his senior officers about his abduction by suspected terrorists soon after he was dumped.

“As I told senior officers, they reached Pathankot. The police were alerted because of my information. I don’t know why the delay (in responding to the abduction incident) took place,” he said.

“Only I know what happened to me. I have got a new lease of life. The truth has come out. Only I and the God knows how I returned,” Salwinder said.

As for his alleged links with smugglers in the border belt, especially the odd time he was moving in the area, the SP said: “If anyone can prove my links with smugglers, I am willing to give up my life.”

The police officer said his abductors came back in his Mahindra XUV with a blue beacon, to look for him and his cook Madan Gopal after both were dumped near a drain in a forest area.

“I had gone to offer prayers at the shrine near Kathua. While returning, we were stopped near Kolia turn. We thought it was a police barricade. Four-five people barged into our vehicle and carjacked my SUV. They put off the lights. My friend Rajesh Verma was driving. We later came to know that they were terrorists,” Salwinder said.

“I could not resist as they were heavily armed. They threatened to shoot us. We were blindfolded, gagged and tied. We could not react. I did not take my gunmen since I was going to a shrine,” the police officer said.

“They had AK-47s (assault rifles) and carried heavy bags. They spoke in Urdu, Punjabi, Hindi. They snatched my mobile phone and also took away Verma’s phone. They were talking to their commander,” he added.

Salwinder Singh said that when his gunman called on his mobile phone and asked for ‘SP saab’, they (terrorists) said ‘Salaam Vallekum’ and disconnected. They attacked Verma, slit his throat and left him for dead.

The police officer said they did not ask for directions as they had global positioning system and were talking about it.

Wefornews Bureau

India

India records 14,849 new corona cases; active cases 1.84 lakh

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Jahangirpuri Delhi Coronavirus Test
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India recorded 14,849 new coronavirus cases on Sunday, taking the active cases to 1,84,408 and total tally to 1,06,54,533, Health Ministry data said. A total of 155 more fatalities took the country’s COVID death toll to 1,53,339.

In all, 1,03,16,786 patients have recovered so far, pushing the national recovery rate to 96.82 per cent, the Ministry said.

According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), 19,17,66,871 samples have been tested so far in the country, including 7,81,752 on Saturday.

India’s corona cases’ tally had crossed the 20-lakh mark on August 7 last year, the 30-lakh mark on August 23 and the 40-lakh mark on September 5. It went past 50 lakh on September 16 last year, 60 lakh on September 28, 70 lakh on October 11, 80 lakh on October 29, 90 lakh on November 20 and one crore on December 19.

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BKU leader accuses govt of acts to disrupt tractor rally

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Rakesh Tikait
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A day after the protesting farmers leaders on Delhi’s Singhu border caught a person who confessed to hatching a conspiracy to disrupt the proposed tractor rally on January 26, Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) spokesperson Rakesh Tikait on Saturday alleged that the Centre and the administration are the ones behind such a “conspiracy”.

The farmer leader alleged that a conspiracy has been hatched to kill four of them and create disturbances during their tractor rally. The person was later handed over to the Haryana Police.

Tikait told IANS: “The man caught from the Singhu border’s protest site was a member of the gang. Only the central government and the administration can carry out such acts.”

“The government has been saying that the tractor rally on January 26 will be violent. How do they know that it will be violent?”

“1Our movement has been quite peaceful for the last two months,” the BKU leader added.

“The apprehended man was associated with a 10-member gang. We have handed him over to the police. Which agency will interrogate him is a matter to be seen,” he said.

Tikait said, “The same people were also part of Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar’s programme. It has now been revealed that the government is behind all such acts.”

“Where there is a mob, violence has to be forcefully created and such an action is resorted to by the administration. These gangs have been imparted training, the same people are part of the mob and commit violence. “

“We have nearly 200 volunteers deployed at various borders of Delhi who are monitoring such suspicious people. We want a peaceful protest,” the BKU leader added.

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Terror hideout busted, ammunition recovered in J&K

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Indian Army Kashmir
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A large quantity of arms and ammunition was recovered after a terrorist hideout was busted by the security forces in the Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday, officials said.

According to details, the security forces received specific input about the presence of a terrorist hideout in a forested area in Mandi.

A joint team of the Border Security Force, police and army carried out the operation.

The hideout was busted and a large quantum of arms and ammunition was recovered including one AK-47 rifle, three AK-magazines, 82 AK rounds, three Chinese pistols, five pistol magazines, 33 rounds of pistol ammunition, four hand grenades and one Under Barrel Grenade Launcher (UBGL).Searches were undergoing in the area.

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