"After our sources confirmed their presence, we surrounded the house. The gangsters opened fire on the police."
Indian police have shot dead Vicky Gounder, known as Punjab’s most wanted gangster. The incident took place on 26th January 2018, nearby a Rajasthan village.
After receiving a tip-off that the criminal was located by the Punjab-Rajasthan border, police carried out an operation to capture him. They soon found him near Fazilka.
While Vicky fired a dozen rounds at the officers, they fatally shot him twice. Reports claim the operation lasted for over an hour. Officers also killed a second gangster, Prema Lahoria, in the encounter.
Reports also add that another criminal suffered injuries in the incident and was taken to a Rajasthan hospital, remaining in a ‘critical’ condition. Police also arrested a fourth individual involved in the shootout.
Two officers suffered injuries and also were admitted to a hospital. The operation recovered three weapons from the gangsters, including two .32-bore pistols. Director General of Police (Intelligence) Dinkar Gupta confirmed:
“We got a tip-off that Vicky Gounder and Prema Lahoria were at Pakki village in Sri Ganganagar district of Rajasthan, barely 50 metres from the border with Punjab, at the house of another gangster, Lakhwinder Singh, alias Lakha.
“After our sources confirmed their presence, we surrounded the house. The gangsters opened fire on the police. Lahoria was killed when he was trying to escape by jumping the boundary wall. Gounder was also killed inside the house.”
Chief Minister, Captain Amarinder Singh congratulated officers, saying on Twitter:
“Congratulations to Punjab Police for killing most wanted gangster Vicky Gounder and his aide Prema Lahoria.
“Excellent work by DGP Suresh Arora, DG Intelligence Dinkar Gupta and OCCU team, including AIG Gurmeet Singh and Inspector Vikram Brar. Proud of you boys”
Vicky Gounder, real name Harjinder Singh Bhullar, first made headlines back in January 2015. He became the main suspect in the murder of Sukha Kahlwan, a rival criminal. Reports at the time even claimed he filmed the murder, danced around the body and fled from police.
Eventually, officers arrested him later in the year.
In November 2016, he escaped prison as one of six prisoners, fleeing the high-security Nabha Jail. He was wanted in at least 12 cases concerning murder, kidnapping and robbery in northern India.
Since then, he eluded police capture until the tip-off in January 2018.