Kathua Police busts interstate robbery gang

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An interstate gang of robbers was busted Saturday with the arrest of three persons in Kathua district of Jammu and Kashmir, police said.

A pistol along with five live rounds were recovered from the kingpin of the gang, who is a resident of Punjab, a police spokesman said.

He said the gang was busted following investigation into the recent robbery incidents at a petrol pump and a shop in the district.

Two petrol pump employees and a shopkeeper were shot at and injured when armed robbers struck a filling station at Chadwal on March 24 and a shop in Parliwand on February 8 before looting cash.

Based on specific information, police arrested the kingpin, Balbir Singh, from Badholi area in Hiranagar (Kathua) and seized a pistol from him, the spokesman said.

Singh, who goes by the alias ‘Pamma’, is a resident of Punjab.

“During questioning, he admitted his involvement in both the robberies,” the spokesman said, adding that Singh is the prime accused in a 2014 murder case registered at R S Pura police station in Jammu.

He was also booked in other henious crimes in Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and Haryana, the spokesman added.

Two of Singh’s local associates — Rakesh Kumar alias Tony and Vishal verma — were also arrested, he said.

Meanwhile, police claimed to have cracked a separate burglary case involving a famous shrine within hours and arrested the accused, a government employee, in Poonch district.

Mumtaz Ali (38), an employee in Animal and Sheep Husbandry department, looted Rs 28,635 from the Shareef Sain Elahi Baksh shrine at Battalkote-Loran in the early hours Saturday, the spokesman said.

He said the accused was intercepted by police while he was trying to escape on his two-wheeler. Stolen cash and the equipment used in the burgalry were recovered from him, the spokesman added.

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