Little Shantanu spent most of his evenings playing cops and robbers with his friend Umang, who lives in the same building, and Saturday evening was no different.
No one in Shantanu’s family, however, would have ever imagined that the 10-year-old who was fond of toy guns would die while playing his favourite game.
The game of cops and robbers turned deadly when the young boys got their hands on a real pistol kept in a bag in Umang’s house and he mistakenly shot Shantanu in the head at point blank range.
The country made pistol belonged to one Mukesh, a friend of Umang’s father, who had come to his house for some work.
The police haven’t been able to recover the illegal weapon.''He left home after having his evening snacks to play with his friend. Within minutes, Umang came back to inform us that Shantanu has hurt himself. I thought he must have been injured while playing,'' said Shantanu’s father, who works as a field boy with an insurance company in Rajouri Garden.
Shantanu’s family has been living as tenants in a three-storey building in west Delhi’s Raghubir Nagar for seven years, whereas Umang’s family had recently shifted to the ground floor house of the building.
''After hearing the gun shot, I came to check and saw Shantanu lying in a pool of blood. I took him to Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Hospital. Initially doctors thought it was a minor injury but soon they realised it was a bullet injury. He died before they could treat him,'' said the landlord.
''He said he would go to watch Ramlila later. But he never returned,'' said the deceased’s father.
(Names have been changed to protect identity)