Yet again one more of the six hand-picked men likened to pillars that supported the very foundation of the special cell — the elite anti-terror wing of Delhi Police — has fallen amid controversy.
Forty five-year-old Badrish Dutt, a technical whiz with unmatched skills at technical surveillance and cellular interception, met a violent end on Friday night. It was an end eerily similar to two of his most celebrated colleagues — Inspector Mohan Chand Sharma and ACP Rajbir Singh.
The similarities are such that their lives and ends seem a re-run of each other. Fathers to two children each; having majestically soared in their field careers after the creation of the special cell in 1994; with expansive ground-level source bases which central intelligence agencies envied. And all three breathed their last facing the barrel of a gun either beyond or close to the Delhi border.
Singh was gunned down by a property dealer in Gurgaon in late March 2008. Sharma had died due to bullet injuries during the infamous Batla House encounter at southeast Delhi six months later and Dutt was plausibly gunned down by the female private eye he was living-in with at Gurgaon’s Aardee City on Friday night.
“This is very, very unfortunate,” said a senior Delhi Police officer, who was posted in the special cell previously.
“The special cell would not have been the elite unit that it is had it not been for Badrish’s technical skills.”
For several men, who have defined the functioning of the elite unit which now happens to be among the first responders to, and investigators of, acts of terror executed across the country — Singh, Sharma and Dutt formed what they call the ‘Trimurti’ or Triumvirate of its functioning.
“Badrish was the technical backbone of each operation — whether terror-related or otherwise — between 1994 and 2007. Sharma would base his plan of action on Badrish’s technical intercepts and finally, it all boiled down to leading the operation from the front which was Rajbir’s responsibility,” said one of his colleagues.
According to many insiders, Sharma refused to rely on Dutt’s surveillance-based warning that there were more alleged terrorists holed up inside the Batla House flat. And he decided to storm it single-handedly on the morning of September 19, 2008, leading to his death.