Pathankot probe: NIA searches home, office of Punjab cop Salwinder Singh

The development came after interrogation of Singh by the NIA for several days in Delhi.

New Delhi/Amritsar: The NIA, which is probing the Pathankot terror attack case, conducted searches at five places on Thursday including office and residences of Punjab Police SP Salwinder Singh and his friends.

Singh's residences in Amritsar and Gurdaspur were searched by the NIA officials, sources said.

The Gurdaspur office of the SP and residence of his jeweller friend Rajesh Verma, whose throat was slit allegedly by the terrorists after kidnapping them along with a cook, was searched by the NIA sleuths.

Residences of cook Madan Gopal and a woman friend of the SP and the jeweller were also searched by the NIA teams.

The development came after interrogation of Singh by the NIA for several days in Delhi.

Amritsar Police Commissioner Jatinder Singh Aulakh said that the NIA team had sought assistance of police which was provided to them.

NIA sleuths along with a police team reached the residence of Salwinder Singh at Chowk Jai Singh inside the walled city in Amritsar where the search operation was carried out.

A lie detector test on the Salwinder Singh was conducted yesterday by the NIA as part of the probe into the attack on Indian Air Force base in Pathankot. He will also be subjected to behavioural tests.

Singh is now posted as Assistant Commandant of 75th Punjab Armed Police after being shunted out as Superintendent of Police (Headquarters) Gurdaspur.

Sources said Singh is expected to be produced before a team of scientists soon. The panel will include a 'behavioural analyst' and 'psychoanalysts', which will give a scientific assessment of his personality.

The NIA is questioning Singh to ascertain the sequence of events that took place after he was allegedly kidnapped on the intervening night of December 31 and January 1 by terrorists of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM).

Singh came under the scanner after he had said that he and the cook were released after their abduction whereas one of their friends, who was travelling with them -- Rajesh Verma -- had been left bleeding midway by the terrorists.

Also, his statement that he was returning from a shrine, which he often visited, was found to be allegedly incorrect after NIA questioned the caretaker of the dargah, Somraj, who told the probe agency that the police officer had come for the first time.

Terrorists had struck at the IAF base on the intervening night of January 1 and 2 in which seven security personnel were killed in the encounter that lasted for three days.

Four bodies of terrorists were recovered while two others are believed to have been burnt in the building where they were hold up during the encounter which lasted for 80 hours.

( Source : PTI )
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