Updated: June 21, 2022 6:04:04 am
FOLLOWING THE arrest of two men described as “shooters” and an associate from Gujarat by the Delhi Police’s Special Cell for allegedly killing Punjabi singer Sidhu Moosewala, officers said on Monday that one of the accused was in touch with Canada-based gangster Goldy Brar at the time of the incident last month.
Among those arrested from Kutch on Sunday, Special Commissioner of Police H G S Dhaliwal identified Priyavrat (26) as the alleged “main shooter and head of the module” that gunned down Moosewala. Sources told The Indian Express that after the incident, Priyavrat sent a message to Brar saying “work is done”.
They said Priyavrat’s associate, Kashish (24), was allegedly the “second shooter”. The third arrested accused, Keshav Kumar, allegedly received the shooters after the murder, the sources said.
Priyavrat was previously involved in two other murder cases, in 2015 and 2021, while Jhajjar resident Kashish was wanted in another murder case, the police said. Keshav has a criminal record, too, including alleged involvement in a murder case in 2020, the police said.
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The accused were arrested near Mundra port in Kutch on Sunday morning following a police raid at a rented apartment where they were hiding, officers said.
Kutch (west) police said the Delhi Police team picked up the three accused from Baroi village. “They came to Mundra around a week ago in search of work and had taken a room on rent in Baroi,” said Hardeek Trivedi, Police Inspector, Mundra.
Six “shooters” have so far been identified by the Delhi Police Special Cell, which is questioning jailed gangsters Lawrence Bishnoi, Kala Rana and Kala Jathedi in connection with the Moosewala killing. A total of 16 gang members and leaders have been arrested by the Delhi Police and other agencies in the case.
Moosewala was killed on May 29 at his village in Punjab’s Mansa by assailants who waylaid the vehicle he was driving and opened fire, killing him on the spot. Brar and Bishnoi had taken responsibility for the murder on social media.
According to police sources, the preliminary probe has revealed that Brar and Bishnoi had planned the murder to take revenge for the killing of Akali Dal leader Vicky Middukhera. The two gangsters allegedly suspected that Moosewala and his manager had helped the assailants who gunned down Middukhera.
In the Moosewala killing, police sources said, the shooters were seen in CCTV footage recovered from a petrol pump near the spot. They were spotted in Fatehgarh right before the incident, they said.
“The murder was well planned. The men had conducted recce around 9-10 times in the weeks before the killing. They roamed around different routes to note Moosewala’s movement. They were not aware of his security arrangements, and were waiting for him to be alone,” the sources said.
“Their aim was to kill Moosewala. For this, they had mounted grenade launchers in reserve and were ready to throw grenades as well. However, Moosewala died within minutes of firing and the additional weapons weren’t used,” the sources said.
According to sources, the police also found that the accused had bought uniforms to pose as Punjab Police officers but didn’t use them and decided to wear masks instead.
Dhaliwal said: “All teams of the Special Cell worked round the clock to track down the syndicate members. We have identified six of the shooters. Two modules were involved in the murder. One was in a Bolero car, which was driven by Kashish. The others were in a Corolla car in which assailants Jagdeep Roopa and Manpreet Mannu were travelling.”
In the Bolero, sources said, Priyavrat and other alleged accused Ankit Sirsa and Deepak Munde were in the back seat. According to police, Mannu allegedly fired the first burst from the Corolla at Moosewala’s car. This halted the singer’s vehicle, they said. From the other side, the shooters in the Bolero then shot the singer, they said.
The men later left in an Alto for different hideouts, sources said.
According to the police, they found weapons and ammunition in Haryana’s Hisar in raids conducted after Sunday’s arrest, including eight grenades, nine electric detonators, an assault rifle, three pistols and a grenade launcher.
On June 8, the Special Cell along with Maharashtra Police had arrested another associate named Siddhesh Kamble from Punjab. He was allegedly involved in planning the incident.
(With ENS/ Rajkot)
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