In the second high profile arrest relating to the police firing on anti-sacrilege protesters in 2015 in which two Sikh youth were killed, Inspector General of Police Paramraj Singh Umranangal was arrested on Monday by the special investigation team (SIT) investigating the incident.
Confirming the arrest, SIT member IGP Kunwar Vijay Pratap Singh said, "We have formally arrested Umranangal in connection with the Kotkapura and Behbal Kalan firing incidents."
The SIT had summoned Umranangal, Additional DGP Jatinder Jain, IGP Amar Singh Chahal, SP Paramjit Singh Pannu and SDM Harjit Sandhu for questioning on February 13. All these officers were on duty on October 14, 2015 when police firing incidents had taken place at Kotkapura and Behbal Kalan village in Faridkot.
Sources said during SIT questioning on February 13, Jain and Umranangal blamed each other over the orders that were given for firing on the protesters.
Umranangal was also questioned by the SIT in November last year over the police firing to disperse protesters at the main chowk of Kotkapura town.
The SIT has already recorded the statements of over two hundred people in the past four months. Following the incident, the state was brought to a standstill as protesters blocked highways and other roads for days.
Earlier, the SIT had arrested former Senior Superintendent of Police Charanjit Sharma from his house in Hoshiarpur on January 27.
The SIT claimed that the accused policemen used force to disperse people who were protesting peacefully, due to which the situation worsened. The policemen had also manipulated the CFL report and tampered with the grooves of bullets recovered from the body of the deceased, it said. Besides, no empties were recovered from the spot.