Dera follower’s murder: Houses of two suspects raided in Punjab’s Faridkot

Faridkot police in Punjab raided the houses of two suspects in connection with the probe into the death of Dera Sacha Sauda follower Pardeep Singh Kataria alias Raju Dhodhi, in Faridkot city area late on Thursday night, officers said.

The police searched the houses of Balwinder Singh Goldy and Manpreet Singh Mani on Sadik Road, but the two could not be found. The raid was conducted on the basis of CCTV footage in which the faces of all criminals could be seen clearly. Sources revealed that raids were being conducted at several places to nab the culprits in the case.

On Thursday morning, six unidentified assailants murdered Dera follower Pardeep Singh Kataria, an accused in the 2015 Bargari sacrilege case. Kataria was arrested in the case in May last year, along with five others, and was released on bail in July last year. He was booked for hurting religious sentiments and for criminal conspiracy, among other charges. According to the SIT report, Kataria had been entrusted to throw pages of the Guru Granth Sahib in a drain.

While the parents of the suspect Goldy told the police that he had not been home for over five days, Mani’s family too gave a similar reply. According to Goldy’s mother, he was a daily wager and a drug addict, and used to stay with Mani most of the time. Mani’s family, however, said they had disowned him.

Both families said they should not be harassed by the police, but that their sons should be punished if they have done any crime.

Meanwhile, Kataria’s father Jaspal Singh alias Sadhu said there was no proof for the allegations against his son. “When police inquiry is underway, who are these people to pronounce their judgment and kill my son? We demand justice as well as the arrest of the culprits and the masterminds behind them,” he said.

Kataria’s wife Simran Kaur said, “It seems some anti-social forces want to spoil the environment of Punjab.” His cousin Varinder Singh added, “We have lost trust in the government… everything appears to be dark ahead.”

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