Indian police have successfully apprehended the notorious Sikh separatist, Amritpal Singh, after an intense month-long manhunt, according to a state police official. Singh, who has advocated for an independent Sikh homeland in Punjab, has been charged with inciting violence and promoting anti-national sentiments. His arrest is seen as a significant move against the resurgence of separatist movements in the region, which has a history of violence stemming from Sikh insurgency in the 1980s and early 1990s.
Amritpal Singh, a 30-year-old self-proclaimed preacher, leads a group called Waris Punjab De (the heirs of Punjab). He and his followers made headlines when they attacked a police station with swords and firearms, demanding the release of one of Singh’s associates. Since then, police have accused Singh and his supporters of attempted murder, obstruction of law enforcement, and creating disharmony, and he has been on the run since mid-March.
Singh was ultimately arrested at a gurudwara, a Sikh temple, in the Rode village of Moga district, Punjab. He was taken into custody under the National Security Act, which permits the detention of individuals deemed a threat to national security without charge for up to a year. Sukhchain Singh Gill, a top official of the Punjab police, stated that Singh will be transferred to Dibrugarh, Assam, where some of his associates are already incarcerated.
The arrest of Amritpal Singh has been hailed as a crucial step in curbing the revival of Sikh separatist movements in Punjab, which have historically led to widespread violence and loss of life. Authorities hope that his apprehension will discourage others from engaging in similar anti-national activities, and help maintain peace and stability in the region.