Mandar Singh, 36, labourer on the farm of slain Shiromani Akali Dal leader Malkit Singh Keetu, was attacked with iron rods on Saturday night at Bilaspur village in this district.
Passers-by moved Mandar Singh to a hospital, where doctors referred him to Rajindra Hospital, Patiala, looking at his critical situation. The victim identified Jaspreet Singh, Keetu's nephew who is also charged with his murder, as one of the attackers.
Keetu had fallen to assailants' bullets on October 29 outside his house in his village, Bilaspur. The former legislator's own nephews, Gurpreet Singh, Harpreet Singh, Jaspreet Singh, and Kala of Deepgarh village in Barnala district and Ladi Singh, were charged with his murder at Nihal Singh Wala. Jaspreet Singh is still on the run.
Keetu's family had complained to the police that the murder suspects had threatened to kill Mandar Singh, if he didn't quit working on Keetu's farm, Wakil Singh, assistant sub-inspector (ASI) of police at Nihal Singh Wala, has confirmed.
"Mandar Singh was on way home from Keetu's farms on Saturday night when some armed men broke his legs," said the ASI. "Mandar Singh identified Jaspreet Singh, Keetu's nephew who is on the run, as one of the people who had attacked him near a telephone exchange."
"The Nihal Singh Wala police have registered a case against Jaspreet Singh; Raju; and Moongi, all of Bilaspur; and Aman of Takhtupura village under Sections 323 (causing injuries voluntarily), 325 (punishment for voluntary serious assault), and 34 (common intent in crime) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Sections 25 (certain offences), 27 (using weapons), 54 (renewal of licence), and 59 (fee payable on petition for appeal) of the Arms Act," said senior superintendent of police Surjit Singh Grewal.