An argument over bursting firecrackers during a wedding turned into a violent scuffle that ended up claiming lives from both the bride and groom’s side in north Delhi on Sunday night, police said.
Altamash Quereshi (23), a resident of Gokulpuri, northeast Delhi and 50-year-old Syed Abdullah from Ajmeri Gate lost their lives within minutes of each other during the incident that occurred at 11 pm at the community centre behind the Town Hall near the old Delhi Railway Station.
According to police, the cause was a misfired cracker during the marriage procession.
“Quereshi, the groom’s relative had lit an anaar (sparkler) which toppled over and reportedly injured someone from the bride’s family,” said a senior police officer.
The episode was reportedly followed by a heated exchange between Quereshi — who worked as a welder near his residence — and the bride’s kin.
“Even before the argument got over, Abdullah, an elder from the bride’s side, was beaten senseless just because he had asked Quereshi and his relatives to refrain from lighting firecrackers.”
Even as a bleeding Abdullah was being rushed to the LNJP hospital in an auto, Quereshi was allegedly stabbed to death by Abdullah’s son, Syed Salim’s (21) friends.
Abdullah later succumbed to his injuries.
“My brother had nothing to do with the people who had assaulted Abdullah. In fact, he was trying to keep the old man out of harm’s way during the scuffle,” claimed Imtiaz Quereshi (33), Altamash’s elder brother.
“My brother was looking for our uncle’s gold chain — which had been misplaced during the scuffle when four men — including Salim, Abdullah’s son, forcibly pulled him aside and stabbed him,” he said.
But Salim and his relatives refuted Quereshi’s claims.
“Altamash was the one who was lighting the fire crackers. He was under the influence of alcohol and the first one to hit my father. Neither I, nor my friends had anything to do with his death. We don’t know who stabbed him. All I know is that my father bled to death after heartless hooligans beat him with weapons,” said Salim who works as a shoe salesman at Palika Bazar.
Police said a case had been registered at the Kotwali police station and investigations into the matter were underway.