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Punjab Police busts fake arms license racket running from Tarn Taran sewa Kendra, six fake arms licensees among eight held

PUNJAB NEWS EXPRESS | July 10, 2024 05:35 PM

AMRITSAR: The ongoing drive to eradicate organised crime in the state as per directions of Chief Minister Bhagwant Singh Mann got a major breakthrough after Amritsar Commissionerate Police has unearthed a Fake Arms Licence Racket with the arrest of its two gang members involved in preparing such licenses and six fake arms license holders, said Director General of Police (DGP) Punjab Gaurav Yadav here on Wednesday.

The racket was running from Tarn Taran Sewa Kendra at the behest of District Manager identified as Suraj Bhandari, who is on the run.

DGP Gaurav Yadav said that the arrested gang members include a Tarn Taran Sewa Kendra employee identified as Harpal Singh and a Photostat Shop owner identified as Baljit Singh, who admitted to be the brains behind tampering requisite identity proofs including Aadhar cards and arms license proforma to facilitate preparation of the fake arms licence. Police teams have also recovered a laptop containing details of the various edited documents and online open source softwares used for tampering documents, he added.

The racket was uncovered following the arrest of Bablu alias Ballu of Anngarh on April 9, 2024 in attempt to murder case, who during interrogation confessed to owning a fake licensed weapons, along with co-accused Kanwardeep Singh.

The DGP said following the revelations of accused Ballu, teams from Police Station Gate Hakima under the supervision of ADCP Zone-1 Dr Darpan Ahluwalia and ACP Central Surinder Singh started investigations and discovered that weapon license was verified from the Deputy Commissioner Office, Tarn Taran but was not reflected in the official record.

Moreover, criminals with adverse record, originally residents of Amritsar, were utilising facilities at Tarn Taran to make fake licenses, on basis of forged Aadhar Cards, in addition to those belong to Tarn Taran, he added.

DGP Gaurav Yadav, while not ruling out the connivance of Gun Houses, said that Police teams are probing the role of earmarked gun houses, with knowledge of license being fake, selling arms on those, without doing online verification. Further investigations are on, he added.

Sharing more details, Commissioner of Police (CP) Amritsar Ranjit Singh Dhillon said that a first information report (FIR) was registered on June 11, 2024, and five more fake arms licensees identified as Abhay of Sultanwind fraudulently shown as resident of Jandiala road in Tarn Taran, Manpreet of Amritsar shown as resident of Tarn Taran, Kanwardeep of Amritsar shown as resident of Railway Road, Tarn Taran and Rohit of Amritsar shown as resident of village Kang in Tarn Taran were arrested on June 12, 2024, while, Harinder, a resident of Sadar Tarn Taran was nabbed on July 2, 2024.

He said that Police teams have also recovered six fake arms licenses and tampered Aadhar cards, and seven weapons— including four .32 bore pistols, two .32 bore revolvers and one double barrel rifle— from their possession.

The CP said that the kingpin Suraj Bhandari was charging Rs 1.5 Lakh per client fees to prepare the Arms License, of which, Rs 5k-10k commission was given to accused Photostat shop owner Baljit, while, Sewa Kendra employee Harpal was getting Rs 10k-20k. They used to append QR Codes, holograms, stamps and digital signatures, he said, while adding that Police teams are on manhunt to nab accused Suraj Bhandari.

A case FIR no. 101 dated 11/6/24 had been registered under sections 417, 420, 177, 465, 467, 469, 471, and 120B of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) at Police Station Gate Hakima in Amritsar.

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