Chandigarh, Aug 11: The Punjab Police on Saturday arrested another member of the Dilpreet-Rinda gang, who was allegedly involved in the attack on well-known Punjabi singer Parmish Verma in April.
This is the second big arrest by the state police in just over a month, since Dilpreet Baba (Dilpreet Singh Dahal), who had also threatened the singer on Facebook, was nabbed on July 9.
Wanted by the police of three states, Akash, a 21-year-old sharpshooter of the gang, was nabbed after a nine-kilometre chase that ended in an exchange of fire in Singhpura area of Rupnagar district, around 40 km from here.
A foreign-made pistol and bullets were recovered from his possession, a police spokesman said. A resident of Nanded Sahib, Maharashtra, Akash was wanted in five cases of murder and 13 cases of dacoity, robbery and the Arms Act, by the police of Maharashtra, Haryana and Punjab.
"In the world of organised crime since the age of 17, Akash had been in Punjab for the past few months," the spokesman said. Rupnagar Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Swapan Sharma said no policeman was injured in the cross-firing, that took place when the gangster's vehicle got stuck near a drain in Singhpura.
"The gangster sustained a bullet injury on his left shoulder," Sharma said. "Reports suggest that Akash was a constant companion to Dahal and was his accomplice in the daring attack on the Punjabi singer in Mohali on April 13, along with many other cases, including broad daylight murders in different parts of the country," the officer said.
Akash, who had been rallying the gang members to free Dilpreet Singh Dahal from police custody during court hearings, had snatched a Toyota Fortuner vehicle from Anandpur Sahib at gunpoint on Friday, Sharma said.
The police team gave a chase to Akash following a tip-off about his movements. Dahal was arrested on July 9 following a shootout in Chandigarh's Sector 43 with a team of Chandigarh and Punjab Police.
He had owned up the attack on Parmish Verma of 'Gaal Ni Kadni' and 'Tor Naal Shada' fame in Mohali, adjoining Chandigarh. Dahal was also an accused in the killing of a village headman in Chandigarh's Sector 38 in April 2017.
Singer Parmish Verma was shot at by unidentified assailants when he was heading home from Chandigarh's Elante Mall late on the intervening night of April 13-14. While Verma and his friend were injured in the attack, the attackers fled from the spot. Dahal later claimed responsibility for the attack through a Facebook post. Verma's hit song "Gaal Ni Kadni" had over 118 million views on YouTube.