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Nabbed with heroin, Amritsar ASI found dead in STF custody

Officials said prima facie it appeared to be a case of suicide. The deceased, Avtar Singh, in his forties, and ASI Jorawar Singh, who were posted at the Gharinda police station in Ajnala sub-division, were peddling drugs in the area for the last few months, they said.

chandigarh Updated: Aug 13, 2019 23:41 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Amritsar
Officials said prima facie it appeared to be a case of suicide.
Officials said prima facie it appeared to be a case of suicide. (Representative image)
         

An assistant sub-inspector (ASI) was found dead with bullet injuries in the custody of the Punjab Police’s anti-drug special task force (STF) in Amritsar’s Mall Mandi area on Tuesday, a day after he was arrested along with his colleague on charges of possessing heroin.

Officials said prima facie it appeared to be a case of suicide. The deceased, Avtar Singh, in his forties, and ASI Jorawar Singh, who were posted at the Gharinda police station in Ajnala sub-division, were peddling drugs in the area for the last few months, they said.

The STF claimed to have seized 10gm heroin, Rs 15,590 and a Honda Amaze car from Avtar and 5gm heroin, 99 counterfeit notes of Rs 100 denomination, a silver role used for inhaling heroin and a Maruti Swift car from Jorawar on a tip-off. Avtar is survived by his wife and three children. A case of theft was also registered against him at the Jandiala police station in 2018.

STF inspector general (IG border range, Amritsar) RK Jaiswal said, “Our preliminary investigation suggests that Avtar committed suicide. On Tuesday morning, he went to a bathroom for brushing his teeth. Then he entered a room of the STF office and shot himself dead by opening fire with an AK-47 rifle. Judicial inquiry into the case has been initiated. All legal proceedings will be followed to find out the exact cause of death.” A police official said Avtar got the assault rifle from an unlocked trunk. “Five shots were fired in one go and two of them pierced through his face,” he said.

HOW HE MOVED FREELY IN LOCK-UP

It is also being seen as negligence on part of the STF as how Avtar was allowed to move freely in the lock-up. Avtar’s family members were not allowed to speak to the media. Also, the HT correspondent tried to visit the alleged suicide spot but was not allowed to do so by STF officials. Police have started inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) in the case. Mohkampura station house officer (SHO) Jagjit Singh, said, “Post-mortem on the body will be conducted at the civil hospital under the supervision of a judicial magistrate on Wednesday.”

First Published: Aug 13, 2019 22:24 IST

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