Abhishek Gurjar and Gaurav Chaudhary had no enmity with BJP leader Brijpal Teotia.
The two shooters, who were arrested on Friday in connection with the incident, told the police that they got involved only because the main conspirator, Manish, was their friend.
They also wanted to earn Manish’s favour so that they could avenge the murders of their family members.
“Dosti ki khaatir karna pada (We had to do it for the sake of friendship),” they told police.
Gaurav, 20, is a wrestler from Dankaur in Gautam Budh Nagar and joined a famous akhara in Delhi in 2010. He had to cut short his sports career when his brother was murdered by a rival group in 2013 at Bulandshahr.
“They had gone to a relative’s house to attend a marriage where an argument broke out over the music. The other group murdered his brother,” a police source said.
“Although a case of murder was lodged, the rivals also lodged a case of attempt to murder against Gaurav’s family members... so he wanted to avenge his brother’s death and felt that he had been wronged despite being a victim,” the source said.
Abhishek’s father was murdered at Loni border near Neelam Factory in 2002. The police suspect that he was murdered by his rivals when he had gone there to negotiate a compromise. Both Abhishek and Gaurav were friends. Their violent family past was one of the reasons for their strong bond.
Abhishek met Manish’s younger brother Vicky when he was a student of BBA at a management college at Dasna in Ghaziabad. Later, Vicky also became friends with Gaurav. Both Abhishek and Gaurav frequently visited Manish’s house.
Police said Manish planned the attack on Teotia to avenge his father, Suresh Diwan’s, murder in 1999. Teotia had been given a clean chit in the case.
Sources said six months ago Gaurav and Manish planned to attack the wrestler’s brother’s murderers but Gaurav’s father stopped them.
Police said both Gaurav and Abhishek agreed to become part of Manish’s plan at least 10-15 days before the BJP leader was attacked on August 11 at Rawli Road in Murad Nagar, Ghaziabad.