Terrorism: Terror-narco link: 53 sites in 6 states raided by NIA, many held | India News
Raids were carried out in as many as 53 locations across six states — Punjab, Delhi, Haryana, UP, Rajasthan and Uttarakhand — and the UT of Chandigarh throughout the day with the necessary support and assistance of the relevant state police forces.
The raids come even as a diplomatic row has broken out over Canadian PM Justin Trudeau’s allegations pointing to an India link in the killing of its citizen Hardeep Singh Nijjar — listed as a terrorist in India and wanted for pro-Khalistan terror activities and other crimes — in British Columbia. India has strongly refuted the allegations. In the raids that started early on Wednesday morning, NIA teams recovered pistols, ammunition, large numbers of digital devices and incriminating material, the investigation agency said in a statement.
NIA raids underway in Rajasthan in connection with Khalistani gangster nexus
Besides Arsh Dalla, others under the NIA scanner in these raids were gangsters Lawrence Bishnoi, Sukha Duneke, Harry Maur, Narender Lali, Kala Jatheri and Deepak Tinu among others.
The locations raided on Wednesday are in Amritsar, Moga, Fazilka, Ludhiana, Mohali, Faridkot, Barnala, Bathinda, Ferozepur, SAS Nagar, Amritsar, and Jalandhar districts of Punjab; Rohtak, Sirsa, Fatehabad and Faridabad districts of Haryana; Sri Ganga Nagar, Jhunjhunu, Hanumangarh and Jodhpur districts of Rajasthan; Gorakhpur in Uttar Pradesh; Dehradun and Udhamsingh Nagar districts of Uttarakhand; besides South-east district of Delhi/ NCR and UT of Chandigarh.
The focus of raids was to go after weapon suppliers, financiers and logistics providers associated with various hardcore gangs and their operatives. These gangs are working with drug smugglers and terrorists based out of other countries, including Pakistan, UAE, Canada and Portugal.
The latest raids were the seventh in the series of crackdowns launched by NIA in the five ‘terrorist-gangster-drug-smuggler-nexus’ cases since August 2022, including the two new cases registered against organised criminal gangs in July 2023. The cases relate to conspiracies of targeted killings, terror funding of pro-Khalistan outfits and extortion by the gangsters, many of whom are lodged in various jails or are operating from foreign countries including Pakistan, Canada, Malaysia, Portugal and Australia.
NIA raids in the cases so far, covering 370 locations, have led to the seizure of 38 arms including 4 lethal weapons, alongwith 1129 rounds of ammunition. Also, NIA has so far frozen 87 bank accounts and attached 13 properties owned by the gangsters, besides seizing 331 digital devices, 418 documents and two vehicles. Two absconders have been declared as designated individual terrorists, and 15 accused declared as proclaimed offenders and Red Corner Notices (RCNs) issued against nine others.
NIA investigations have revealed that the conspiracies were being hatched in jails of different states, followed by their execution by an organised network of operatives based abroad. Notable among such conspiracies were the sensational killing of Maharashtra builder Sanjay Biyani, mining trader Mehal Singh and international kabaddi player Sandeep Nangal Ambia in Punjab last year.
Many of the criminals who were earlier leading gangs in India have fled abroad in recent years and are now pursuing their terror and violence related activities from there, NIA said.