Haryana, Punjab cops launch hunt for former terrorist

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Chandigarh, Feb 3 (UNI) The Haryana Police assisted by the Punjab Police have launched massive manhunt to nab former Khalistan Liberation Force (KLF) terrorist Bakhshish Singh who is suspected of being behind the failed assassination attempt on Sirsa-basedf Dera Sacha Sauda head Baba Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh.

The bomb explosion tried at the Baba's calcavade near Nilokheri in Karnal district yesterday left nine injured. The Baba was on his way to Baghpat in Uttar Pradesh after attending a court hearing at Ambala.

A team of the Haryana Police which reached Patiala last night launched a joint combing operation with the Punjab Police in and around the city including the rural areas to nab those responsible for yesterdays attack.

Official sources told UNI here today the search operations were also conducted in and around Rago Majra village, from where Bakhshish Singh hails. The team raided the house of the former KLF terrorist, who is on bail but returned empty handed.

Soucrse said that the police also raided some houses in Majri Akalian village on Sirhind Road.

Meanwhile a report from Karnal said that district police chief A S Chawala confirmed that high-powered explosive material was used in the attack. This explosive material was set aside in the rear stepney of a ten tyre truck which was passing alongside the Baba's convey.

The Superintendent of Police (SP) who was addressing mediapersons said that the explosive material was linked with the battery of the truck for detonation. He informed that after investigations it was found that the driver and cleaner of the truck were "used" by the main suspect, Bakhshish Singh, who was on bail since 2003.

He said that police teams had been sent to the states of Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh for further investigation. " We strongly suspect that Bakshish Singh was behind this incident", he added.

Mr Chawala said that police had rounded up the driver and cleaner of the truck after the blast and they were still being questioned. No other arrests had been made so far, he added.

A team of the Forensic Laboratory, Madhuban had lifted samples from the spot of the blast for investigation.

Meanwhile Karnal Deputy Commissioner B S Malik claimed that as a result of the blast two vehicles were damaged and two persons were injured.

UNI HS JS1705

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