Did slain ASIís pistol jam, making him helpless? Cops seek forensic report

Around five bullets remained in the magazine of the 9mm semi automatic service pistol, that the slain Punjab Assistant Sub-Inspector (ASI) Ravinderpal Singh had held on the day he was shot dead, prompting police to send the weapon for a forensic examination to look at the probability of the ASI's pistol having been jammed due to double feed of bullets in the pistol chamber.

A police official, who was actively associated with the preliminary investigations after the ASI was allegedly murdered by former SAD general secretary Ranjit Singh Rana, told The Indian Express that there was high probability that the ASI's pistol got jammed due to double feed of bullets rendering him helpless as he looked for cover behind the fender (portion near the front tyres) of his car. The official said that such pistols have 10 bullets in the magazine.

He added that if the pistol gets jammed due to double feed, it sometimes needed to be taken to a mechanic to make it work again. "It depends on how badly the bullets get jammed. One can get it addressed then and there only, but if the bullets are jammed badly, the pistol has to be taken to a mechanic," the official said, adding that in the ASI's case, either the bullets may have jammed badly or he may have turned his attention to his injuries or to his daughter, during which time, Rana returned with a 315 bore rifle and allegedly shot the ASI dead.

Had the pistol remained in an operational state, Ravinderpal may have saved himself by injuring Rana in self defence, another police official said. "The ASI may have also thought that opening direct fire on Rana, might prove detrimental to his job. Otherwise, it is difficult to explain the situation where on one side you have a trained official and on the other, somebody with no matching training," the official added.

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