Lucknow: The Uttar Pradesh Police are not ruling out the possibility of sleeper modules of pro-Khalistan terror outfits being active in the state’s Khadar region.

This startling realisation struck the police when after an encounter in Shamli on Sunday morning three Khalistani sympathisers were arrested. The police had also recovered weapons looted by them after killing two Home Guards volunteers on October 2.

Talking to The Tribune, Shamli SP Dinesh Kumar said when the culprits — Karam Singh of Shamli, Gurugent, alias Jinta, of Saharanpur and Amreet, alias Amrit, of Karnal — were arrested, the police had little idea of the larger terror conspiracy that the weapons were looted to assassinate former Punjab CM Parkash Singh Badal during one of his political rallies.

“It was shocking when they confessed to this during interrogation. But we are glad that we defeated their plan,” he said.

According to him, the police are hunting for the mastermind, German Singh and his accomplice Karma. “Only after the arrest of German Singh, who is said to be in touch with the top leadership of the pro-Khalistan terror outfits, will the police get a complete idea of how far this terror network has spread and who all are working for it,” Kumar said.

He said the Central agencies and the STF were closely looking at their footprints to ascertain sleeping terror modules in the rich Khadar region inhabited by prosperous Sikh farmers. “We have even intensified community policing to alert people about the danger of associating with terror outfits,” the SP said.

The absconding mastermind, German Singh, a resident of Birsa ka Dera, Azizpur village of Shamli, is a rich farmer. Karam Singh, one of the trio arrested on Sunday, was a granthi of Rangna village (Jhinjhana) gurdwara.