The Ludhiana police claim to have arrested a gang of miscreants who used to loot bus passengers by posing as police officials.
The police arrested three members of the gang on late Wednesday evening while one miscreant managed to flee.
The accused, claimed the police, have admitted that they had looted around Rs 1.13 crore and 700 gm of gold from various passengers in 11 different incidents in the past one year alone.
The police have recovered Rs 5 lakh in cash, two police uniforms, one pistol, 2 cartridges and a Tavera car from their possession.
The arrested have been identified as Raja Ram of village Thammanwal in Moga, Dinesh Kumar of Laxman Nagar in Giddarbaha and Kamaljit Singh of Balwinder Nagar in Faridkot. The accused, who managed to flee, has been identified as Bhola Ram of Zeera.
Addressing a press conference on Wednesday, the police commissioner, Ishwar Singh, said on a tip-off a police team led by inspector Gurbans Singh Bains, incharge CIA-1, put up a naka at Sahnewal Chowk. The accused were traveling in a Tavera car.
Explaining their modus operandi, the police commissioner said a couple of gang members used to keep an eye on any rich passenger at bus stands. "The accused used to chase their potential preys by following them in the buses. Their accomplices, meanwhile, used to wear police uniforms and stop the bus at the outer areas of the city. On any pretext, they would make their target step down the bus and then looted him."
The police commissioner said none of the accused arrested by them had any connection with the police. Their kingpin Surjit Singh alias Pappu, however, was dismissed from the intelligence wing of the police in 2006. Surjit, along with one of his accomplices Ashwani Devgan, is presently lodged in Patiala jail. The police would seek their production warrant for questioning.
The duo was arrested around seven months ago by the Fatehgarh Sahib police for looting bus passengers.
The accused have admitted before the police that they had carried out around 11 looting incidents in the last one year alone.
Looted Rs 2.25 lakh from a person on the Mullanpur to Jalandhar route.
Looted Rs 18 lakh from a person near Mandi Gobindgarh.
Looted Rs 9 lakh from a person near Mohali. The accused were following him from the Ludhiana bus stand.
Looted around 700 gm gold from a person near Dabwali. They were following the person from Delhi.
The accused looted Rs 8 lakh from a person near Ajitwal of Moga. They were following the person from the Aarti Chowk of Ludhiana.
Looted Rs 2 lakh from a person on the Ludhiana bus stand. Looted Rs 8 lakh from a person in Jagraon. They were chasing the victim from Ludhiana.
Looted Rs 6 lakh from a person in Phagwara.
Looted Rs 20 lakh from a person in Rajpura. They were chasing the victim from Ludhiana.
Looted Rs 20 lakh from a person in Gobindgarh. They were chasing the victim from Ludhiana.
Looted Rs 20 lakh from a person in Sarhind. They were chasing the victim from Ludhiana.