Indian police on Monday arrested a dreaded militant commander who, along with four gangsters, had escaped from a prison in the northern Indian state of Punjab Sunday.
“Militant outfit Khalistan Liberation Force’s chief Harminder Singh Mintoo was caught near Delhi’s border in the early hours of the day. Four other gangsters, however, remain missing,” a senior police official said.
The arrest came following a tip-off by police from the neighboring state of Haryana that Mintoo was trying to go to Delhi from where he had planned to flee to Nepal, the official said.
Mintoo and four other gangsters had escaped from the Nabha jail in Punjab early Sunday morning after some 10 armed men dressed in police uniforms broke into the prison and fired 100 rounds of ammunition at prison guards, injuring two of them.
The Khalistan Liberation Force is an insurgent group that is part of the Khalistan movement to create a Sikh homeland called Khalistan via armed struggle. The group appears to have been a loose association of scattered Khalistani groups.
Mintoo was arrested by police from Delhi airport in November 2014. The 47-year-old is an accused in multiple terror-related cases across India. Others are well-known criminals mostly involved in running criminal gangs, the official said.
A massive manhunt has been launched to track down the four others who escaped from the jail, the official said.
This is the second major jailbreak in recent times. In October, eight “highly dangerous” members of the banned Islamist group Students’ Islamic Movement of India escaped from a high security jail in the central city of Bhopal. Hours later, police claimed to have killed them in a gun battle. Endit