Picked up in a wave of preventive arrests since Thursday in the wake of the controversial Sarbat Khalsa, 24 Sikh radical leaders have been remanded in judicial custody here and many even transferred secretly to outside jails.
Nine of these radical leaders — Jassi Singh, Ajaib Singh, Jang Singh, Surjeet Singh, Babbu Singh, Kala Singh, Pappa Singh, Jaswant Singh and Chanan Singh — were picked up from Kotshamir under Sections 107 (security for keeping peace) and 151 (arrest to prevent cognizable offences) of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), and they will remain in judicial custody till November 27. Sikh preacher Hardeep Singh was picked up from his house at Mehraj village in the district.
Early Friday, the jail authorities shifted United Akali Dal (UAD) leader Gurdeep Singh to the Sangrur central jail secretly, while some other activists arrested on Thursday night were sent to the Nabha jail in Patiala, sources in the Bathinda jail have said.
Bathinda senior superintendent of police (SSP) Rajeshwar Singh Sidhu said the jail department was free to shift any prisoner and the local cops had only provided it with security for this purpose as required. On Friday, police raided the house of many radical leaders in the district. Members of Gurdeep’s family said police had not informed about shifting the leader. His son, Yadwinder Singh, said: “We got to know only in the morning when I went to meet father in the jail. Our people who checked at the Sangrur jail confirmed that he was there and not allowed to meet any visitor.”
Mand takento Nabha jail
Nabha: Dhian Singh Mand, who was recently appointed acting jathedar of the Akal Takht by the radical Sarbat Khalsa, was taken to the new district jail in Nabha late on Thursday night. The former member of Parliament had been arrested from Amritsar and remanded in judicial custody.