The three assailants who killed gangster-politician Atiq Ahmad and his brother Ashraf posed as journalists, carrying video cameras, mike and media identity cards, the Uttar Pradesh Police said on Sunday.
According to the statement issued by Special DG (Law and Order) Prashant Kumar, the attackers used made-in-Turkiye pistols and fired indiscriminately from point-blank range at the two brothers.
The statement identified the three accused as Sunny (23) from Hamirpur, Lavlesh Tiwari (22) from Banda and Arun Kumar Maurya (!8) from Kashganj.
“At about 10.30 pm, both Atiq and Ashraf were being taken for a health examination to Motilal Nehru Regional Hospital in Shahganj area, where mediapersons were persistently trying to take bytes of the two,” the Special DG (Law and Order) said in the statement.
“The mediapersons were breaking the security cordon to reach to the accused (Atiq Ahmad and Ashraf) for taking their bytes. In this sequence, both Atiq and Ashraf were giving bytes to the media and they were escorted (by the police). Meanwhile, from the crowd of media, three mediapersons with video camera, mike and media Id reached them and started firing indiscriminately,” he said.
The two brothers got injured and fell on the ground instantly, he said, adding they were taken to the hospital where they were declared dead.
Constable Maan Singh has sustained a firearm injury, the police statement issued on Sunday evening said, adding some mediapersons also got injured due to the “stampede” following the firing.
The injured policeman has been also sent for treatment.
The three attackers were caught by the policemen using necessary force, the statement said.
According to information gathered till now, Sunny is a professional criminal and a historysheeter and has 14 criminal cases including that of murder, loot, narcotics transport, attempt to murder pending against him in Hamirpur, Kumar said.
Tiwari faces cases of selling of illicit liquor, manhandling and harassing women at the City and Beberu police stations in Banda, he said, adding cases under Information Technology Act were also registered against him.
Maurya’s criminal history is being traced, he said.
The statement said police have recovered three firearms, including a countrymade A-30 pistol (7.62), a made-in-Turkiye nine-mm Girsan pistol, and a 9-mm Zigana Pistol, also made in Turkiye, it said.
An FIR has been registered in this case at Shahganj police station and probe is underway.
A report on the entire incident has been sent to the National Human Rights Commission and the State Human Rights Commission.
A three-member judicial commission has been constituted by the government that will submit its report within two months. The commission is headed by HC Justice (retired) Arvind Kumar Tripathi, while ex-DGP Subesh Kumar Singh and former district Judge Brijesh Kumar Soni are its members.
Both Atiq and Ashraf were brought to Prayagraj from Gujarat and Bareilly prisons for interrogation in connection with the killing of Umesh Pal and his two police security guards.