An Akali leader was shot dead in his car on Tuesday evening by an Amritsar police party in civil clothes, who reportedly intercepted his car and fired indiscriminately at him, killing him on the spot. The incident triggered strong protests by district Akali leaders, led by Shiromani Akali Dal’s Amritsar (Urban) president, Upkar Singh Sandhu. The protesters blocked the Verka bypass, on the busy Amritsar-Batala road, connecting the holy city with Jammu.
Amritsar Police Commissioner, Jatinder Singh Aulakh, said Mukhjeet Singh Mukha, the Youth Akali Dal leader in-charge of ward number 16 in Amritsar Municipal Corporation, was killed after police opened retaliatory fire, while suspecting him to be the notorious gangster, Jagdeep Singh Jaggu, who is wanted in several criminal cases.
“We had information that Jaggu was in the area, travelling in a car without a number plate. A police party tried to stop the car, but it sped away. When police chased and intercepted his car, the person opened fire, injuring head constable Rajesh Kumar. The police party fired in retaliation,” said Aulakh.
But, Mukhjeet’s family and SAD leadership blamed the police for killing Mukhjeet in a “planned manner”.
Mukhjeet’s nephew, Prince, while standing next to the car involved in the incident and with Mukhjeet’s blood-soaked body still inside it, alleged that “number plates of the car were removed” after his uncle was shot dead. He claimed that his uncle did not open fire and the police kept his licensed weapon on the seat after the incident.
Prince also spoke about his uncle’s dispute with a rival group over an “objectionable status” that was posted on internet. He added that after a complaint was lodged against them, the group had come to their locality looking for his uncle last month and, during a heated argument, allegedly shot at a neighbour — Gurdev Singh — who had told them to behave. Gurdev Singh later succumbed to his injuries.
Speaking about the case, SAD leader, Sandhu said: “Today, Mukhjeet had met senior police officials to seek the arrest of the accused in the Gurdev murder case.”
Calling the incident a “supari killing”, he also demanded a case of murder against the policemen involved.
“Mukhjeet was busy carrying out a membership drive for the Youth Akali Dal. The list of members is inside the car. Police are wrong in claiming that he opened fire,” Sandhu said.