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HindustanTimes Mon,21 Apr 2014

Saturday shootout: Criminals involved in earlier attacks too

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, January 21, 2013
First Published: 00:06 IST(21/1/2013) | Last Updated: 00:08 IST(21/1/2013)

A day after the sensational gun-battle between alleged Mewati criminals and policemen, the Delhi police suspect that the same group was involved in attacking four police personnel a couple of days ago.

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A criminal was killed and a police constable suffered a gunshot injury in Saturday' encounter.

In order to ascertain the link between the two incidents, the crime branch of Delhi police has been roped in to conduct investigation into the entire matter. Investigators from the crime branch will not only verify the role of police officers involved in the chase and encounter, but will also probe the reason that resulted in the shootout.

Though the preliminary investigation into the case indicates that the police officers fired in ‘self defence’, investigators will record the statements of all the officers who were present on the spot. They will re-create the entire incident and question the five criminals who were arrested after the encounter. 

Police officers involved in the encounter have claimed that the criminals had opened fire at them when they were asked to stop their vehicle during the chase which continued for around 16 kms.

Three days ago, a group of Mewati criminals had attacked police personnel when their Tata 407 mini truck was being chased in two different PCR vans. The criminals had resorted to stone pelting when their vehicle was intercepted at different police pickets in Samaipur Badli and Narela areas.

Though four policemen were injured in the attack, the criminals had managed to flee, leaving behind their mini truck in which they were transporting four stolen cows.

Two more cases of cattle theft were committed, probably by the same gang, in outer Delhi in the past few days for which cases have been registered by the local police.

In the wee hours of Saturday, police officers in 38 vehicles had chased the cattle thieves after receiving specific information about the movements of Mewati criminals in outer Delhi areas.

“Some cattle-lifters were found stealing four cows and a buffalo in a mini-truck and when challenged they opened fire at the policemen. A message was sent to the control room for back up and the chase began. There was a heavy exchange of fire between police and criminals after which one constable was hit with a bullet and a criminal, identified as Yakub, was shot dead,” the officer said.

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