The Moga shootout case took a turn on Wednesday as the local police gave the clean chit to two suspects, Gurcharan Singh alias Rinku of Channuwala village and Khushwinder Singh alias Sukhpal of Sangatpura village.
Alleged gangster Sukhdev Singh ‘Car Bazaarwala’ and his gunman Inderpreet Singh Gora were killed in an encounter with the Chandigarh crime branch on June 25. Two policemen were also injured in the shootout, besides Rinku and Sukhpal.
In a statement in the court of the additional chief judicial magistrate here, the Moga police reportedly claimed that Rinku and Sukhpal were not involved in the shootout. Subsequently, the court ordered their release with immediate effect.
The Moga police had registered a case against Rinku, Sukhpal and four unidentified people under sections 307, 148, 149 and 186 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and sections 25, 27, 54, 59 of the Arms Act at the city (south) police station on the complaint of the Chandigarh crime branch incharge, inspector Ranjodh Singh.
Interestingly, the Chandigarh police had been claiming that Rinku and Sukhpal were members of Sukhdev’s gang. A team of the UT crime branch had arrived here on June 25 to arrest Rinku and Sukhpal in an assault case lodged in Chandigarh.
Sources stated that during their two-day police remand, Rinku and Sukhpal recorded their statements, saying that they knew Sukhdev Singh and wanted a compromise in the Chandigarh case, which was registered on the basis of a statement given by Harpinder Singh of a Moga village.
According to the police, two men named Jagmeet Singh and Balraj Singh, who now live in the US, had an old enmity with Harpinder. Sources said Rinku and two other people had allegedly assaulted Harpinder at his rented house in Chandigarh and made a video clip, which was sent to the US.
As per information, Rinku and Sukhpal confirmed during the interrogation that when the Chandigarh police reached the Kotkapura bypass on June 25, it was Sukhdev who first shot at the crime branch team.
HS Pannu, superintendent of police (SP), Moga, said further investigation was underway.