Namdhari’s custody extended

On Sunday,  a Delhi court extended the police remand till 5 December of sacked Uttarakhand minority panel chief Sukhdev Singh Namdhari, booked on murder charges in liquor baron Ponty Chadha shootout case.

Extending Namdhari’s police custody by three more days, Metropolitan Magistrate Sunil Beniwal observed that five more co-accused, who have altered and cleaned the pistol used in the incident, have to be arrested, for which the accused has shown willingness to make their arrest possible.

‘The matter is under investigation and more co-accused including those who have altered and cleaned the pistol have to be arrested in the present case. The accused has assured the police that he would accompany them to make their arrest possible, therefore, he is remanded in police custody till 5 December,’ Beniwal said.

Namdhari, who has been in police custody since his arrest, was produced before the court after his three days’ police remand expired on Sunday.

Seeking his custodial interrogation for five more days, the crime branch of Delhi police told the court that all the five accused involved in the crime have to be arrested and the vehicles used in the crime seized.

The probe agency also told the court that the accused himself has confessed that he will accompany the investigating officer (IO) to get arrested the other accused involved in the crime as they are absconding from their present place of stay.

Namdhari was arrested in connection with the 17 November shootout in a farmhouse, in which Ponty and his brother Hardeep had lost their lives.

In its remand plea, the police said, ‘From the investigations conducted so far, it has been established that accused (Namdhari) has played a vital role in the conspiracy with the other co-accused who acted on his instructions.

‘On interrogation of the accused and examining the witnesses it had been found that on the behest of the accused, co-accused armed with fire arms and other deadly weapons forcefully entered and took possession of the farmhouse at Chhattarpur,’ as per the remand application.

Police also said that during the police remand, ‘Namdhari led the police party to hideouts of some of the accused in Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh. All these persons are absconding and evading arrest.’

According to police, Namdhari has disclosed that his associates Hardayal Singh, Simranjeet Singh, Jasbir Singh, Balkar Singh and Baaj Singh have fled.

The agency, however, said his other associates Satnam Singh and Balwinder Singh were presently in custody and added that the person who altered and cleaned the pistol has to be arrested from his hideout in Punjab at his instance.
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