Namdhari leader shot dead near Bhaini Sahib
Shivani Bhakoo and Gurminder Grewal
Tribune News Service
Two unidentified persons today shot dead 57-year-old Avtar Singh Tari, a staunch follower of Satguru Jagjit Singh Ji of Bhaini Sahib (about 25 km from here) on the Ludhiana-Chandigarh highway. Based at Mohali, Avtar Singh, belonging to the Namdhari sect, was a frequent visitor to Bhaini Sahib.
According to available information, Avtar Singh started from Mohali this morning in his Toyota Altis car. On the way he was followed by three persons on a Pulsar bike. Fearing a threat to life, Avtar Singh stopped at an acquaintance's place near Kohara. After staying there for about 15-20 minutes, when he resumed his journey to Bhaini Sahib, the unidenified persons on the motorbike, who were waiting for him, started firing at him from point-blank range.
According to witnesses, the bullets were pumped straight into his chest, head, stomach and thighs and he died on the spot. The body of Avtar Singh was sent to Civil Hospital, Ludhiana for the postmortem.
The police recovered 11 empty cartridges from the spot. The Police Commissioner Ishwar Singh, who was camping at Bhaini Sahib till the filing of this report, said, "The situation is under control and the investigations are on. Forensic experts have taken the empty cartridges to find which weapon was used by the assailants for committing the crime". The case under Sections 302/34/120 B (IPC) and 25/54/59 of the Arms Act has been registered against three unidentified persons at the Sahnewal police station.
One of the sewadars at Bhaini Sahib gurdwara, on the condition of anonymity, said that the deceased is survived by one son and two daughters. "Basically, Avtar Singh belonged to village Amrasaar in Sirsa district and was into the property dealing business. He was a staunch follower of Satguru Jagjit Singh Ji. Though it is too early to say anything but we believe that the murder is the outcome of a personal rivalry. Some sophisticated weapon seems to have been used by the assailants", said the sewadar.