Internet Services Suspended as Police Mobilise to Arrest Radical Preacher Amritpal Singh In Punjab

Guwahati: A radical preacher Amritpal Singh was the target of a crackdown by the Punjab Police on March 18.

According to a senior home affairs department official, internet access has been suspended until Sunday noon.

“All mobile internet services, all SMS services (except banking & mobile recharge) & all dongle services provided on mobile networks, except the voice call, in the territorial jurisdiction of Punjab shall be suspended from 18th March (12:00 hours) to 19th March (12:00 hours) in the interest of public safety,” said Dept of Home Affairs & Justice, Govt of Punjab

There was no official confirmation of the police action though. Police allegedly stopped Amripal’s cavalcade on Saturday in Mehatpur village of  Jalandhar district.

Even though he was able to flee, six of his supporters were reportedly arrested. Some “Waris Punjab De” chief followers posted several videos on social media with the premise that police were pursuing them.

On a video of Amritpal riding in a car one of his assistants was heard claiming that police were looking for “Bhai Saab” (Amritpal). In a video that he released, another supporter in the field said that police were after him.

Meanwhile, the Punjab Police urged everyone to uphold harmony and peace.

“Request all citizens to maintain peace & harmony. Punjab Police is working to maintain Law & Order. Request citizens not to panic or spread fake news or hate speech,” it said in a tweet. 

Last month, Amritpal and his supporters some of whom were armed with swords and firearms stormed the Ajnala Police Station on the outskirts of Amritsar and engaged in combat with officers in an effort to free one of Amritpal’s aides. Six police officers, including one with the rank of Superintendent of Police were injured during the incident.

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