By Staff Reporter

Indian Punjab Police on Saturday clarified that British hotelier Ranjit Singh Power has been murdered, but his body was yet to be recovered, rejecting initial reports that a body found in a Punjab forest was of the business man.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Rajinder Singh told reporters in India that the victim’s friend and business partner, Baldev Singh Deol, and his partner’s driver strangled Power at Anandpur Sahib in Ropar district, some 80 km from here.

Rajinder Singh, who is based in Jalandhar town, said the crime was committed on May 8 when Power landed in India and was last seen in Amritsar.

The body of Power, who was on a business trip to India, was later thrown in the Bhakra canal in Ropar.

After allegedly committing the crime, Doel returned to Britain on May 15, the police officer told Indian reporters

“We are yet to recover the body,” he said.

On being asked about the recovery of a body from a forest near Anandpur Sahib, he said: “We have also got the information. I cross-checked and it was a different body.”

Based on the interrogation of driver Sukhdev Singh, who is also Deol’s nephew, police said they have unearthed incriminating evidence relating to the crime.

“We will seek police remand of Sukhdev Singh and initiate extradition of Deol from Britain,” he said.

He said the car used in the crime has been recovered.

“The victim’s two briefcases and two handbags are yet to be recovered. As per the interrogation, they are lying in Sukhdev Singh’s flat in Jalandhar.”

Both Sukhdev Singh and Deol were booked under section 302 (punishment for murder) and section 365 (kidnapping or abducting) of the Indian Penal Code.

A property dispute is believed to be the cause of the crime.

Earlier, a kidnapping case had been registered by the Jalandhar police against Deol on the complaint of the Wolverhampton hotelier’s brother Amrik Singh, who resides in Jalandhar.

Power, 54, was reported missing by his family, when there was no news from him after he left for India on May 7.