ASI murder: Akali leader, three others arrested

With the SAD-BJP government facing severe criticism over the killing of ASI Ravinderpal Singh, the Punjab Police on Thursday claimed that they have arrested the prime accused in the case, along with three of his accomplices.

ASI Singh was allegedly shot dead by Ranjit Singh Rana, now expelled SAD general secretary, at Chheharta in Amritsar on Wednesday. Rana allegedly first fired shots at the ASI's legs, then brought his 315 bore rifle from his house nearby and shot him dead from point blank range. The ASI had asked him to stop stalking his daughter.

It took police chiefs of five districts Amritsar (Rural) SSP Preetpal Singh Virk, Tarn Taran SSP Kamaljit Singh Dhillon, Gurdaspur SSP Rajjit Singh, Ferozepur SSP Varinderpal Singh and Kapurthala

SSP Inderbir Singh to launch a massive manhunt with 30 gazetted officers and 60 SHOs, besides sealing of district borders to nab Rana at around 5am from Rajoke and his accomplice Dharampal at 8 am near Khemkaran border. Both the places are in Tarn Taran district.

The police claimed to have caught another person, Prabhjit Singh, a resident of Sohal, after he, Rana and Dharampal allegedly fired at the police team that was chasing them. Later, the police also arrested Gurbir Singh, another accused in the case.

Addressing the media at Amritsar, DGP Sumedh Singh Saini claimed that the police have recovered all the three weapons and vehicle used in the crime. He announced that Chheharta SHO Ashwani Kumar has been dismissed. "During a probe by an SP, the SHO has been found to have committed dereliction of duty by not acting on the complaint of the girl against the accused," he said.

The family of the girl claimed that she had complained against Rana to the police at Chheharta on December 1. The Chheharta police station is located close to crime site, yet the police failed to reach on time on Wednesday even as Rana allegedly managed to bring another weapon and shot the ASI dead. It was Gharinda police where the ASI worked that reached the spot first, despite being located 15 km away.

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