Extortion: Former sarpanch, aide land in police net
A day after being booked for extorting money from a dairy owner by threatening to implicate him in a false case of rape and molestation, a former sarpanch and his accomplice landed in the police net on Thursday.
Their other aides, including three women, however, are yet to be arrested. According to the police, the accused had formed an organised gang which used to extort money from people.
The police have also recovered ₹20,000, a revolver, two mobile phones and a Mahindra Scorpio from their possession.
The arrested accused have been identified as Nirmal Singh, 44, head of Raipur Makha village in Mansa and Pritpal Singh, alias Pali, 42, of Kundanpuri.
The accused, who are yet to be caught, are Gurdeep Singh of Cheema Mandi in Sangrur, Bhinda, also from Sangrur and three women, who are residents of Ludhiana.
The police said Nirmal was the kingpin of this gang and was already facing trials in similar cases. Women members of the gang are related to Nirmal Singh, the police added.
During questioning, the accused confessed of extorting money from three more persons by using similar threats — implication in false cases.
Assistant sub-inspector (ASI) Boota Singh, who is investigating the case, said the accused have extorted ₹90,000 from a man, Jatinderpal Singh of Dhamot village, who owns a dairy.
“The accused had contacted him through their woman gang member, who asked him to deliver milk at her residence. As the dairy owner reached there, the woman asked him to come inside the house and offered him water and tea. Meanwhile, other members of the gang turned up there and tore his clothes. The accused started blaming him for attempting to rape the woman and,” he added.
“Later, Nirmal demanded ₹3 lakh from him at a gunpoint. The accused also snatched documents of his vehicle. Jatinderpal managed to arrange ₹90,000 and handed over the money to the accused. The accused continued to threaten him for the remaining amount. It was then he approached the police,” the ASI said.
He ASI added the police arrested the accused from Gill village as they arrived there to take the rest of the money from Jatinderpal.
“Nirmal is already facing trial in two cases registered against him in Moga and Sangrur. The accused have also extorted money from residents of Bathinda. The women in the gang are his relatives. A hunt is on for to nab the other accused,” the ASI said.
“An FIR under Sections 342 (wrongful confinement), 384 (extortion), 385 (putting person in fear of injury in order to commit extortion), 420 (cheating) and 120B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC, along with Sections 25 and 27 of the Arms Act, has been registered against the accused. The police have produced the accused before the court. The court has remanded the accused to three-day police custody,” he added.