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Assam: Dibrugarh jail official arrested in connection with seizure of gadgets from ‘Waris Punjab De’ inmates

By | Edited by Vaibhav Tiwari
Mar 08, 2024 12:46 PM IST

A major security lapse was found in the NSA cell of Assam's Dibrugarh jail, where separatist leader Amritpal Singh and associates are held.

The superintendent of Dibrugarh Central Jail in Assam was arrested on Friday in connection with the seizure of electronic gadgets from the possession of inmates belonging to the radical outfit ‘Waris Punjab De’, news agency PTI reported, quoting police sources. The officer was arrested in the morning due to “laxity” and is currently at Dibrugarh Sadar Police Station.

Ten members of the pro-Khalistani group, including its leader Amritpal Singh and one of his relatives, have been arrested in Dibrugarh since March 19 last year. (HT Photo)

The official was further quoted by PTI as saying that the arrest was linked to the confiscation of electronic devices from cells housing inmates under the National Security Act (NSA) last month. Among the items seized from inmates associated with the pro-Khalistani outfit were a smartphone with a SIM card, a keypad phone, a TV remote with a keyboard, a spy camera pen, pen drives, Bluetooth headphones, and speakers.

Security breach in Dibrugarh jail

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A significant security lapse was identified in the National Security Act (NSA) cell of the heavily guarded Dibrugarh jail in Assam last month. This is where the separatist leader and “Waris Punjab De” chief Amritpal Singh and his companions are currently detained.

"Reference NSA Detenues at Dibrugarh Jail, Assam-On receipt of information about unauthorised activities taking place in NSA cell, additional CCTV cameras were installed in the public area of NSA block," Director General of Police GP Singh had posted on X.

Upon being alerted to these activities, extra CCTV cameras were installed in the communal zones of the NSA wing. The prison employs a comprehensive security setup, featuring round-the-clock three-tier security, CCTV surveillance, and close coordination between state and central authorities.

Pro-Khalistani outfit members in Dibrugarh jail

Ten members of the pro-Khalistani group, including its leader Amritpal Singh and one of his relatives, have been arrested in Dibrugarh since March 19 last year. They were apprehended under the National Security Act (NSA) from various locations in Punjab during a crackdown on the organisation.

The radical Sikh preacher and his nine associates, including his relative, were detained under the NSA and transferred to a jail in Assam, where stringent security measures were implemented. Subsequently, their family members and legal representatives were permitted to visit them. Amritpal Singh is reportedly housed in solitary confinement, while his associates are held in separate cells.

Before their arrest, Singh had been evading Punjab Police for over a month during their crackdown on him and his followers.

Upon their transfer to Dibrugarh, extensive security measures were enacted, including installing additional CCTV cameras and repairing or replacing malfunctioning cameras. Dibrugarh prison, established in 1859-60, is renowned as one of the oldest and most secure penitentiaries in Northeast India.

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