Raids in Patiala, Nabha, Sangrur jails; mobile phones, drugs seized | punjab$patiala | Hindustan Times
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Raids in Patiala, Nabha, Sangrur jails; mobile phones, drugs seized

In a bid a see if prisoners, especially gangsters, were using electronic gadgets to remain active on social media and to keep in touch with their gangs outside, police teams on Sunday morning conducted raids in jails of Patiala, Nabha and Sangrur, recovering dozens of mobile phones, SIM cards and contraband.

punjab Updated: May 09, 2016 16:19 IST
HT Correspondents
Raids

Policemen during the raid at the district jail in Sangrur on Sunday. (HT Photo)

In a bid a see if prisoners, especially gangsters, were using electronic gadgets to remain active on social media and to keep in touch with their gangs outside, police teams on Sunday morning conducted raids in jails of Patiala, Nabha and Sangrur, recovering dozens of mobile phones, SIM cards and contraband.

The raids, which were conducted simultaneously, were part of a statewide campaign, police officials said. As many as 16 mobile phones and 1-gram narcotic were seized from different cells from jails in Patiala district alone.

Fatehgarh Sahib senior superintendent of police (SSP) Harcharan Singh Bhullar led a police team at the Patiala Central Jail and searched the premises where two mobile phones, two SIM cards and 1 gm opium were found. An official said one mobile phone was found inside a barrack and while the other was found in a place where woods are stored near the jail boundary.

The 300-strong policemen team started the raid at around 5am and lasted till 10 am. He said the team searched every corner of the jail, including barracks, temple, gurdwara and factory, which remain closed on Sunday but opened for search.

Patiala SSP Gurmeet Singh Chauhan led a police team that searched the high-security Nabha jail where nothing suspicious was found. However, 14 mobile phones, chargers and headphones were recovered from the Nabha modern jail.

Chauhan said the raids were the part of the state government’s drive to ensure that Punjab jails do not become havens for organised crime.

Sources in the police department said the possibility of involvement of jail staff in allowing banned objects inside prisons could not be ruled out.

Many jailed gangsters have their Facebook pages, which they keep updating regularly themselves or with the help of their friends from outside, or even from outside the country. Some of the pictures with captions posted on the social networking sites were of these inmates as if they were on some outing.

The unabated use of mobile phones inside the Nabha jail came to light after one of its inmates, Vicky Gounder, a member of the Shera Khuban gang, claimed to kill rival gangster Jaswinder Singh Rocky who was shot dead recently at Parwanoo in Himachal Pradesh, on his purported Facebook page. Gangster-turned politician Rocky was from Fazilka.

Some other gangsters also posted on social networking site claiming to have killed Rocky.

500 cops search Sangrur jail

In Sangrur, over 500 policemen checked the district jail and recovered a mobile phone from a cell. The police termed it as a routine checking, saying it was conducted on the directions of director general of police (DGP) Suresh Arora.

A team led by Sangrur SSP Pritpal Singh Thind, accompanied by three SPs, 13 deputy superintendents of police (DSPs), station house officers (SHOs), a duty magistrate and nearly 500 constables searched the prison, recovering a mobile phone without a SIM card.

The checking started at 5am and lasted for nearly three hours. While police officials said this was unapprised checking, sources in the department claimed that the jail authorities were informed about this earlier.

Earlier, police have caught prisoners smuggling drugs in vegetables, mattresses and lunch boxes in the prison. Thind said the raid was conducted on the DGP’s orders.

SP Jaskiranjit Singh Teja said a case has been registered in connection with the recovery of mobile phone. The mobile jammer installed in prison has developed a snag and a report would be sent to the authorities to fix it soon, he said. Duty magistrate Rajesh Dhiman said this was a routine checking.

Gangsters’ activities on social media behind raids

1) Many jailed gangsters have their Facebook pages, which they keep updating themselves or with the help of their friends from outside, or even from outside the country

2) Some of the pictures with captions posted on the social networking sites were of these inmates as if they were on some outing

3) Use of mobile phones inside the Nabha jail came to light after one of its inmates, Vicky Gounder, a member of the Shera Khuban gang, claimed to kill rival gangster Jaswinder Singh Rocky who was shot dead recently at Parwanoo in Himachal Pradesh, on his purported Facebook page. Gangster-turned politician Rocky was from Fazilka

4) Some other gangsters also posted on social networking site claiming to have killed Rocky

Gangster-politician Rocky killed: Rivals celebrate ‘revenge’ on Facebook