18/02/2019 8:17 PM IST | Updated 18/02/2019 8:20 PM IST

Punjab: IGP Umranangal Arrested For Kotkapura Firing Incident

In 2015, two Sikh men protesting against the desecration of the Guru Granth Sahib were shot dead by police.


Jalandhar, PUNJAB: The Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the Behbal Kalan and Kotkapura firing incident arrested IGP Paramraj Singh Umranangal from Chandigarh on Monday.

Confirming this to HuffPost India, SIT member IGP Kunwar Vijay Pratap said that there were enough evidence against Umranangal for his alleged role in the firing incident at Punjab’s Kotkapura, which claimed two lives on 14 October 2015.

“On the day of the incident, IG Umranangal was posted in Ludhiana and had no authority to be at the incident site. Despite this fact, he reached there and commanded the whole operation. He also misled us during interrogation and  failed to give a satisfactory reply when asked under what capacity and whose orders he had steered the unprovoked firing that claimed two lives,” said Kuwar Vijay Pratap.

On 12 October 2015, protests broke out after the holy book Guru Granth Sahib was found desecrated at Bargari in Faridkot district .

Two days later, early in the morning, two Sikh protestors were shot dead by police, allegedly in an unprovoked attack while sitting on a peaceful protest reciting prayers.

As per SIT sources, Umranangal had allegedly directed the police officials at Kotkapura to fire weapons to disperse the protesters who were sitting on protest at the main chowk of Kotkapura town. The incident was condemned by the Sikh diaspora across the world.

NARINDER NANU via Getty Images
The scene at the Kotkapura site, a day after the shooting.

Umranangal had earlier been questioned by the SIT in November last year. This is the second arrest in the case so far by the SIT, which was formed by Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

 While the SIT had arrested former SSP Moga Charanjit Sharma on 27 January, three other prime accused including SP Bikramjit Singh, inspector Pardeep Singh and Amarjit Singh Kular have been granted anticipatory bail by the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

IG Kunwar Vijay Pratap had also issued summons to Punjab’s former Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal and his son and SAD President Sukhbir Badal as well as Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar on November 11 last year.

While Kunwar Pratap was asked to leave in a high-voltage drama reported at the Badal’s residence in Sector 4 in Chandigarh when he reached at the venue  to interrogate the Badals, Akshay Kumar had joined the investigations recently.

The Commission of Enquiry headed by Justice (retd) Ranjit Singh probing into the incident had submitted its first report on June 30 last year.