Head constable Joga Singh, personal security officer (PSO) of Sukhpal Singh Khaira, has told the special investigation team (SIT) that kingpin of the Fazilka drug haul case Gurdev Singh alias Chairman was in touch with the former MLA and Congress leader when was on the run to avoid arrest in the case.
Joga Singh was quizzed on Sunday by the SIT, probing the alleged role of Khaira in the drug racket unearthed last week after the arrest of eight alleged smugglers, including Gurdev Singh.
“During grilling by the SIT, Joga Singh disclosed that while escorting Khaira, he had received calls of Gurdev Singh, former chairman of the market committee of Bholath. He said during Khaira’s conversation with Gurdev, he had overheard Khaira assuring help to him (Gurdev) in getting his name cleared in the case,” a senior police officer disclosed on the condition of anonymity.
Besides the SIT men, Joga Singh was also questioned by officials of the counter- intelligence wing and the Punjab Police.
Joga Singh is a close confidant of the Khaira family as he has remained attached to the family for more than past 20 years.
Earlier, he was posted with Sukhjinder Singh, father of Sukhpal Singh Khaira, and continued with Khaira after the death of Sukhjinder.
During questioning, Joga Singh confirmed that he was well acquainted with Gurdev Singh and his driver Manjit Singh (who was also arrested on Saturday) as they had long association with Khaira, revealed sources in the police.
Joga further disclosed that on March 4, while travelling from Delhi to Chandigarh with Khaira, he received a call on his cell phone from Gurdev Singh from a different number than the one earlier used by him (Gurdev Singh), sources added. Then Gurdev Singh spoke to Khaira on his (Joga Singh's) cell phone. He said, “Also, a call from the UK (mobile number +447778209183) of Gurdev Singh's sister was received on his cell phone. After reaching Chandigarh, two more calls were made by Gurdev Singh Chairman (mobile number 84276-05084) on his cell phone and six calls on March 4 and 5 were made by Gurdev Singh's sister from the UK.
The calls were made to speak to Khaira. Khaira also made a call from Joga’s mobile to Gurdev Singh's sister on her mobile.” When contacted, Amar Singh Chahal, DIG, Ferozepur, who is heading the three-member SIT, acknowledged that Joga Singh was questioned on Sunday by the SIT as well as the counter-intelligence wing of the state police, but refused to divulge more information.
The Fazilka police had recently claimed to have unearthed a racket of heroin smuggling with the arrest of eight people, including the kingpin, allegedly close to Khaira and seized 2kg heroin, two Pakistani sims, one Pakistani mobile phone, 24 gold biscuits (333 gms), two firearms and a SUV from them.