A total of three gangsters were nabbed, two of whom were taken away by the Nawanshahr cops while the third arrested by the local police was identified as Gurpreet Singh alias Laddi, a resident of Sherkhan village in Ferozepur district.
The two accused taken into custody by Nawanshehar police were identified as Arjun, a resident of Kapoori Gate, Batala, and Heera Masih, a resident of Kalian village here.
Eyewitnesses said at around 4.30pm, some people in khaki trousers and black jackets came on a white Maruti Suzuki Ertiga car and parked it outside the petrol pump.
After waiting for a while, they drove their car right to the middle of the road and stopped a white Mahindra Scorpio (HR-26AF- 1277) coming from Jalandhar side with three occupants.
The policemen overpowered them and tried to push them into their car but one of the car occupants suddenly opened fire at the policemen and ran towards adjoining Guru Teg Bahadur Nagar, a densely populated residential colony. An injured policeman took the pistol of his companion and tried to chase him. The alleged gangster entered the narrow lanes of the colony and again fired at the cop. On this, the policemen also retaliated in which the gangster was injured, but he managed to escape.
Later, the police team took two of the gangsters in their car and left towards Mehta Chowk along with the Scorpio.
The local police sounded an alert in the area and during a search operation they arrested the gangster, Gurpreet Singh, near the local bus stand.
The cops identified him as he had a bullet injury on his leg and took him in custody. He was rushed to the civil hospital from where he was referred to Amritsar. “All the three accused were members of the Jaggu Bhagwanpuria gang. Recently, they along with others helped one of their aides, Akul Khatri, escape from police custody in Nawanshahr. Since then, police teams of Nawanshehar and Hoshiarpur were searching from them.
The Batala senior superintendent of police was not available for comments even after repeated attempts.
Interestingly, the incident took place at a distance of 100 metres from a permanent police check-post. City police station house officer (SHO) Gurpinder Singh was present at the checkpost when the shooting took place.
Surprisingly, local police had no clue about the shootout. It was only after some mediapersons questioned Batala senior superintendent of police (SSP) Daljinder Singh about the firing that he dispatched a team of cops to the spot.