DGP Punjab has set up a Special investigation Team (SIT) to probe the attack on relatives of cricketer Suresh Raina on the orders of Chief Minister Captain Amrinder Singh, who is personally monitoring the case.
Ashok Kumar, the cricketer’s uncle, died on the spot while his son Kaushal succumbed to his injuries on Monday. Three other family members were injured, including Ashok Kumar’s wife, Asha Rani, who is reported to be in critical condition.
Though initial investigations suggest that the attack had the signature of criminals belonging to a de-notified criminal tribe, who are often seen to operate along the Punjab-Himachal border, the SIT has been mandated to examine all possible angles, according to DGP Dinkar Gupta. Specialised teams from Organised Crime Control Unit have also been roped in to carry out a 24X7 probe into the case.
Inter-state raids are being conducted to hunt out suspects involved in past crimes of similar nature, and more than 35 suspects are under the scanner. Few persons from Himanchal and Uttar Pradesh have been identified as suspicious and their mobile numbers and whereabouts are being located. Raids have also been carried out in Gurdaspur, Tarn Taran and Amritsar in coordination with local police.
Six labourers who were working with the deceased Ashok Kumar have been interrogated. Tower dumps of the crime scene and nearby locations have been taken and sent for technical analysis to track suspicious movements, according to the DGP, who disclosed that CCTVs of the area and Army/ BSF area have been checked for any suspicious movement. Investigations so far also suggest the accused had planned to rob/trespass three other houses in the neighbourhood.
Similar previous incidents in Punjab are also being checked out to ascertain whether the suspects in those cases were in jail or out, according to the DGP.
Giving details of the SIT, Gupta said it is headed by SPS Parmar, IGP Border Range, Amritsar, with SSP Pathankot Gulneet Singh Khurana, SP Investigation Pathankot Prabhjot Singh Virk and DSP Dhar Kalan (Pathankot) Ravinder Singh as members. ADGP Law & Order Ishwar Singh has been tasked with the day-to-day supervision of the investigations, while SPS Parmar has been authorised to co-opt any other police officer(s) posted in the State for expeditious investigation into the case.
The DGP said that the IGP is also at liberty to obtain the support and assistance of any other Wing/Unit of the Punjab Police to probe the case, registered as FIR no. 153, dated 20.08.2020 u/s 460/459/ 458 IPC, at PS Shapur Kandi (Pathankot), where the incident took place late on 19th night in Vill Tharyal.
ADGP L&O and Chairman SIT have been directed to apprise the DGP of the status of investigation on a daily basis. The DGP said he will regularly update the Chief Minister, who has directed all measures to ensure expeditious investigation and arrest of the culprits.