KZF module: Use of drones to smuggle in arms from Pak started in August, say Punjab Police

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Published on Sep 28, 2019 01:16 AM IST
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ByHT Correspondent, Chandigarh

Denying reports about recovery of another drone from Amritsar on Friday, the Punjab Police claimed consignments of arms and ammunition smuggled into India from across the border started in August this year when the first drone was recovered in Amritsar.

Police teams are also on the job to ascertain the links of the terror groups involved in sending these drones from Pakistan, said a police spokesperson, clarifying that so far only two such drones have been recovered — one last month and the second in a burnt condition three days ago in Chabal village in Tarn Taran district.

Giving details, the spokesperson said the police had stepped up its vigil at the border after the recovery of a crashed ‘hexacopter drone’ (having six electric motors) on August 13 from Mohawa village, 1.5 km from the India-Pakistan border, under Gharinda police station in Amritsar district.

The recovery followed an anonymous call received by Amritsar (rural) police that a fan type object had been seen in the paddy/fodder fields of a farmer in Mohawa village.

On examination, it was found that the model of the recovered drone was ‘U10 KV100-U’, and it had been designed and manufactured by T Motors, a Chinese company. Four brick-sized batteries (made in China) were also found installed in the hexacopter.

Enquiries revealed that hexacopter drone has a payload capacity of 21 kg and it could have been assembled from parts, which are available commercially off the shelf.

The recovered drone, weighing about 20-25 kg, had suffered minor damage to one of its ports and motor propellers, most probably from the impact of the crash landing. Parts of white nylon rope were also recovered from the drone.

The spokesperson said the details of the drone were promptly shared with the central government for facilitating further technical investigations by central agencies concerned.

He said the heightened vigil launched after the recovery of this drone led the police to the busting of a terror module comprising Akashdeep Singh, Baba Balwant Singh, Harbhahan Singh, and Balbir Singh.

Subsequently, Shubhdeep Singh was also arrested for his involvement in the handling of a large consignment of weapons, along with hand grenades, satellite phones, wireless sets and other communication devices, which were later recovered by the police.

Interrogation of the accused led to the recovery of the second, half burnt drone, three days ago.

Akashdeep has revealed that two 9 mm pistols had been smuggled through the half-burnt drone around the beginning of September. The drone had apparently crashed in the Indian territory before it could fly back to Pakistan after dropping arms near the Indo-Pak border.

The foreign handlers, Gurmeet Bagga of Khalistan Zindabad Force (KZF), and his associates based in Pakistan, including KZF chief Ranjeet Singh alias Neeta, who were handling the terror module, had informed Akashdeep and his associates about the crashing of this drone inside the Indian territory.

They had also shared the coordinates of the crash landing site and directed Akashdeep to go to the crash site and destroy the drone by burning it to avoid its detection by police.

Accordingly, Akashdeep and his associates burnt the drone and also disposed of the steel frame of the drone in a drain, said the spokesperson.

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