Intelligence sources indicate that an activist of the BKI reportedly being a ‘human bomb’ armed with RDX and plastic explosives, is present in Delhi and aims to create disturbance during the January 26, Republic Day celebrations.
The Punjab police busted a narco-terrorist network operating from Jammu and Kashmir. According to official sources in Gurdaspur, Punjab, one person was arrested from village Banni Lodhi, bordering Kathua district of Jammu and Kashmir for his alleged involvement in the smuggling of narcotics, arms, and ammunition from Pakistan. The sources said that the arrested had developed a clandestine alliance with Pakistan-based Khalistani terrorist leaders Wadhwa Singh Babbar and Parmjit Singh Panjwar.
Bhatinda Police arrested a notorious criminal with terrorist connections and recovered a Chinese pistol and live cartridges from his possession. According to police sources, the arrested person had frequently crossed over to Pakistan to ferry arms and drugs for terrorists in Punjab.
Punjab Police arrested a KCF (Zaffarwal) terrorist, a proclaimed offender evading arrest since October 1990, for his involvement in a terrorist case. According to the Police, a case had been registered against the terrorist under various sections of IPC, Arms Act and TADA, in October 1990.
Police arrested four BKI terrorists along with three kilograms of RDX and some arms and ammunition from Harchowal village in the Batala District.
Punjab Police sources said, a Kashmiri terrorist arrested earlier in Gurdaspur, on April 1, has confessed to links with a police officer and a local politician. The arrested terrorist, a former student of Jammu University, also disclosed that a hotel room in the Gurdaspur used as a control room by Pakistan’s ISI. As reported earlier, four Kashmiri terrorists associated with the BKI were arrested from Harchuwala in Gurdaspur, where they were planning an attack during the Ramnavami, a Hindu religious event, celebrations of April 2 in Batala town.
Punjab Chief Minister, Parkash Singh Badal said that, "No one has approached me concerning the surrender of Wassan Singh Zaffarwal. I am not aware of anything in this connection. I have just read in the newspapers that Zaffarwal wanted to surrender". It was reported that Wassan Singh Zaffarwal, Chief of the KCF (Zaffarwal), who was staying in Switzerland until recently, has come to India intending to surrender before the Punjab police.
Punjab Chief Minister, Prakash Singh Badal, addressing a press conference, in Chandigarh, said that the government was ready to open its door to militants willing to surrender. The Chief Minister stated this in reply to a question on reports in the press regarding the surrender proposals of the Chief of the KCF, Wassan Singh Zaffarwal, who is believed to have arrived from Switzerland.
The president of the Akali Dal (Amritsar), Simranjit Singh Mann, in Jalandhar, alleged that senior Punjab political leaders belonging to different parties had well-established links with terrorists. He also criticized the KCF chief, Wassan Singh Zaffarwal's reported move to surrender.
Majitha Police arrested chief of the KCF, Wassan Singh Zaffarwal.
The KCF chief, Wassan Singh Zaffarwal was remanded to police custody till April 20, by Judicial Magistrate in Amritsar. A senior police official claimed that Zaffarwal's arrest was a big achievement of the police. Zaffarwal had managed to enter Punjab on a fake passport in the name of Charanjit Singh and had arrived at the local Rajasansi Airport on March 9.
According to official sources, the Punjab government decided to grant special remission of sentences to prisoners convicted under the TADA of 1987. This one-time measure has been announced by the Governor, on the occasion of the bicentennial celebrations of the coronation of Maharaja Ranjit Singh.
A KCF terrorist, Rachpal Singh Lalli surrendered in Jagraon. His surrender came close on the heels of the arrest of KCF chief Wassan Singh Zaffarwal. Rachpal Singh had fled to Philippines after being declared a proclaimed offender in 1991.
According to official sources, the interrogation of the arrested KCF chief Wassan Singh Zaffarwal has established that many more terrorists living abroad are prepared to return home if given a chance. He reportedly said the government should evolve a concrete policy to help militants return to the mainstream as they were disillusioned with the goal of Khalistan. In a dramatic volte-face, Zaffarwal said Khalistan was no more his goal, and added, Punjab, as a part of India, “is our homeland".
Intelligence sources said that the arrested KCF chief Zaffarwal faces a serious threat to his life from Pakistan's ISI. According to reports, the ISI was perturbed over his return that could virtually set a trend for others who had escaped abroad with its assistance. This could prove a psychological setback to the ISI's efforts to foment trouble in Punjab. The ISI is known to have spent a considerable amount of money and effort in propping some of these terrorist outfits and Zaffarwal's return is seen as a sort of breach of trust. Zaffarwal had enjoyed the hospitality of the ISI in Pakistan for several years before he fled to Switzerland. Moreover, Zaffarwal might throw light on the ISI network in Punjab.
Union Minister of State for Home, Vidyasagar Rao, informed the Lok Sabha that Pakistan's security personnel had destroyed their end of a secret 135-yard underground tunnel, detected on March 1, 2001, across the India-Pakistan border in Punjab's Gurdaspur district.
According to official sources, a huge cache of arms, including two carbines, a Thomson machine gun, a stun gun, 12 grenades, 11 magazines, and 2,287 cartridges, were recovered from the Sirhind canal siphon near Chamkaur Sahib in Ropar district. According to Police sources, (unidentified) terrorists seemed to have thrown the weapons into the canal to evade the police.
United Kingdom 19-Apr-2001
The BKI has dissolved its UK wing following the ban imposed by the British Government on 21 different terrorist organizations, including the ISYF. It was dissolved by Avtar Singh Sanghera, vice-president, BKI. He, however, said the outfit had submitted a memorandum to Jack Straw, British Home Secretary, for lifting the ban. He alleged the ban was imposed at the behest of the Indian Government as both the organizations had wings all over the world.
The Punjab government is reportedly apprehensive about a possible resurgence of terrorist violence by a section of terrorists, who did not like the way the KCF chief returned to India and offered himself for arrest. Security officials also speculate that the ISI, to aid these disgruntled terrorists, may involve non-Sikhs in engineering violent strikes.
The arrested chief KCF, Wassan Singh Zaffarwal, has reportedly said that during his exile in Pakistan, he and scores of other Punjab terrorists were puppets in the hands of Pakistan's ISI. Speaking to newsmen at Baba Bakala in Amritsar, he revealed that they were under the complete control of Pakistani bosses who would tell them to write letters and issue directions to terrorists operating in the field (Indian Punjab). He added that their operations were mainly funded through sources in Europe and North America which were routed through traders based in Lahore and Sialkot, Pakistan.
AISSF President, Manjit Singh Bhoma demanded that Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal should announce a general amnesty for all those terrorists who had migrated to western countries during the decade-long terrorism in the State. He said these terrorists should be allotted Siromani Akali Dal (SAD) (Badal) tickets in the ensuing State Legislative Assembly elections so that they could raise their genuine demands in the State Assembly in a democratic way, instead of taking up the gun culture.
Officials of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) recovered 17.59kg of heroin in Pathankot and arrested two persons in this connection.
United States 30-Apr-2001
According to media reports, annoyed over the arrest of Wassan Singh Zaffarwal, chief of the KCF, the foreign-based Sikh terrorist outfits have resolved to observe the 15th anniversary of the declaration of ‘Khalistan’ at Stockton, California (US). The declaration of Khalistan "was made at Akal Takht by the Panthic Committee" on April 29, 1986, to which Zaffarwal was one of the five signatories.
Five Babbar Khalsa terrorists were arrested in Nabepur village, Gurdaspur District. A large number of sophisticated arms, including AKs and explosives, including RDX and PETN, was recovered from them.
Police unearthed an illegal arms factory, 100 yards away from a police station, at Mohali. The factory was reportedly operating clandestinely for the past 12 years.
After the arrest of the KCF chief Wassan Singh Zaffarwal, Punjab police are reportedly getting feelers from at least three other dreaded terrorists, including Pakistan-based KCF chief (Panjwar) Paramjit Singh Panjwar, for their surrender. Though admitting that some terrorists settled abroad had sent feelers for their surrender, Punjab DGP Sarabjit Singh refused to name them. However, the DGP said, "We may have some big names like Zaffarwal in our custody soon". He said Pakistan-based terrorists were shaken by Zaffarwal's arrest and were being pressured by the ISI to step up subversive activities in northern parts of the country. Media reports quoting intelligence sources said Punjwar, who is wanted in several cases including killings, had recently escaped from Pakistan and made contacts with some senior Punjab police officials.
Gurcharan Singh Tohra, former president of the SGPC urged the government to announce a general amnesty for all those who had been blacklisted for their role in the terrorism in Punjab during the eighties. Tohra said, ‘Those involved in the Khalistan movement are not the only ones wishing to return, but there are people who had fled the country out of fear of the police or some other reasons. Now that the separatist movement has died down, the Indian Government should initiate a move to heal the wounds’.
In a bid to revive terrorism in Punjab and provide financial assistance to undertrial terrorists, funds from abroad continue to flow into the country. This was revealed by Sukhwinder Singh alias Sukha, the leader of Babbar Khalsa who was arrested on May 1, 2001. A senior police officer said that Sukha had received a sum of Rs one lakh through hawala transactions from Germany. This amount was sent by a German-based person known as 'Babaji' and another known as Piara Singh, both of whom are active fundraisers of the Babbar Khalsa.
In another development, the chief of the KCF-Punjwar, Paramjit Singh Panjwar, in an interview dubbed reports in the media suggesting his willingness to surrender, denied he has no such plans.
According to media reports, radical Sikh organizations in Punjab have renewed their efforts to observe the anniversary of Operation Bluestar, on June 6, 2001, at the Golden Temple in Amritsar. As many as 15 different organizations have reportedly decided to declare Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale a martyr and observe June 6 as ‘martyrdom day’. These organizations have reportedly formed a 15-member Sant Jarnail Singh Shaheedi and Ghalughara Yadgari Committee. The Committee has also approached Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Joginder Singh Vedanti to declare Bhindranwale a martyr.
Police arrested two KLF terrorists from Ludhiana. They were arrested while trying to snatch the car of a resident whom they killed when he refused to oblige. A senior police official said eight criminal cases, including murder, were registered against one of the terrorists identified as Jasbir Singh Jassa, who had been absconding from the Nabha jail since August 21, 2000. The duo reportedly carried out orders at the behest of England-based KLF members, Gurnam Singh, and Sandeep Singh.
The Punjab and Haryana High Court permitted London based Khalistan terrorist leader Jagjit Singh Chauhan to visit India. Responding to a petition filed on behalf of Chauhan, the Court rejected the government's contention that there were several intelligence reports regarding Chauhan's continuing activities as a propagandist of Khalistan and directed the Union government to issue necessary travel documents to Chauhan through the Indian High Commission in London. The Court observed that a citizen could not be denied his fundamental rights based on such reports only.
A day after Punjab and Haryana High Court permitted him to visit India, the Khalistan protagonist Jagjit Singh Chauhan, in a telephonic interview to a national daily, expressed his keenness to return to Punjab. A former Punjab Minister and Deputy Speaker of the State Assembly, Chauhan said he aimed to work and struggle through peaceful means for the attainment of Khalistan, which would include Punjab and the Punjabi- speaking areas of the neighbouring States. He denied that Khalistan was a communal movement aimed at setting up a theocratic state.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police arrested Inderjit Singh Reyat in connection with the bombing of Air-India flight 182 on June 23, 1985, and the intended bombing, in 1985, of Air-India flight 301. At the time of his arrest, Reyat was serving the final two days of a 10-year sentence for manslaughter and explosive charges, relating to a 1985-bombing at New Tokyo international airport in Japan, in which two persons were killed.
Punjab Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal said that his government would never allow militancy to raise its ugly head in Punjab once again. He said it was the responsibility of everyone, especially of the media, not to glorify the deeds of terrorists as it was not in the interest of the country. When asked about the insecurity that had spread among the people following the granting of permission to terrorists to return to the State from their foreign-based hideouts, he said nobody would be allowed to indulge in violence.
Police arrested a terrorist of the Babbar Khalsa from Dhingar village in Mansa District. The terrorist had been declared a proclaimed offender since 1992 under various sections of the Arms Act and the now-defunct TADA Act.
The separatist Sikh leader and Khalistan ideologue Jagjit Singh Chauhan, in Mohali, said that he would remain active for the cause of Khalistan. Chauhan, who returned to India after spending 21 years in exile in the UK, claimed that the undercurrents of the Khalistan movement were very strong there and in other western countries. He added that the urge for Khalistan manifests in the form of protests, conferences, rallies, and demonstrations and also in the form of several pro-Khalistan magazines published in the UK. The Federation of Sikh Organisations, which serves as the platform for different organizations, continues to hold periodic meetings. Chauhan said he had been in touch with various pro-Khalistan groups and terrorist leaders such as the BKI and the ISYF. But he denied having links with groups and terrorist leaders based in Pakistan. He also revealed that he had been in touch with Wassan Singh Zaffarwal after the latter left Pakistan. He said, "We have planned to come to India. Since Zaffarwal decided to follow the illegal route to return, he was able to make it much earlier."
Police arrested 12 persons, on their arrival from Pakistan, at Attari in Amritsar, for their alleged links with Pakistan's ISI. Police sources said the arrested persons had left India about five years ago and had gone to Pakistan through Lebanon. Police are trying to verify the antecedents of the members of the group.
Separatist leader and Khalistan ideologue Jagjit Singh Chauhan, in Mohali, said that the three other Panthic Committee members were already in Punjab to achieve their goal of Khalistan through 'democratic' and 'non-violent means'. Regarding their identities, he said, "As per my information, the two are Jarnail Singh Hoshiarpuria and Shehbag Singh." According to police sources their names have figured in the preliminary investigations of various bomb blasts and other terrorist activities in the State. These revelations by Chauhan support the assertion by Pritpal Singh Khalsa, the Switzerland-based 'godfather' of Wassan Singh Zaffarwal who also stated that two Panthic Committee members, who are till date absconding are already in Punjab.