Terrorist Jagtar Tara to be extradited from Thailand


A Bangkok court Tuesday ordered Babbar Khalsa International (BKI) terrorist Jagtar Singh Tara, also known as Gurmeet Singh, to be extradited from Thailand to India, according to information received by the Punjab Police, reports IANS.

Tara is one of the terrorists convicted in the assassination of then-Punjab chief minister Beant Singh. Beant Singh was killed in a bomb blast at the secretariat complex in Chandigarh on August 31, 1995. The blast claimed the lives of 17 others. Dilawar Singh Jaisinghvala of Khalistan Liberation Force acted as the suicide bomber.

IANS said Tara could be handed over to Indian authorities within a month for extradition.

Tara was arrested by Thailand Police near the beach resort town of Pattiyya Monday following a tip off from the Punjab Police. He had shaved off his beard and cut his hair and had been living illegally in Thailand for over four months.

Three BKI terrorists – Tara, Jagtar Singh Hawara, Paramjit Singh Bhaura – and their accomplice Devi Singh, a murder convict housed in the same prison barrack, had made a sensational escape by digging a 104-foot-long tunnel in the high-security Burail jail in Chandigarh in 2004. Hawara and Bhaura were re-arrested by security agencies later but Tara remained elusive.

News agencies reported that Thai National police spokesman Lt Gen Prawut Thawornsiri said Gurmeet Singh entered Thailand in October and was arrested in the eastern province of Chon Buri on Monday.

Punjab police had received a tip last June that he was living in Thailand on a Pakistani passport as Gurmeet Singh. A police team went to Thailand in September but Gurmeet Singh remained elusive.

Thai officers also arrested Pakistani national Ali Alat, the owner of the house where Gurmeet Singh was found.  Alat said that he was not aware about Singh’s criminal background.