Traders of Chowk, Lakkhi Chautra and Thatheri Bazar area closed their shops on Saturday to protest the sensational murder of local Congress leader - cum - saree trader, Ram Lal Tripathi in the city on Friday evening. Traders demanded immediate arrest of the assailants.
Police have identified one of the assailants allegedly linked to jailed mafia don, Ramesh Yadav alias Babu Yadav, contesting the election of corporator from Varanasi. Old enmity was stated to be the cause of the murder. According to reports, Tripathi was opposing extortion by the gang of Babu Yadav in the saree market of Chowk.
According to police, Tripathi hadg criminal background. An FIR had been lodged against him on December 9 1999 here in connection with the murder of a youth in the city.
It may be noted that 46 year -old, Ram Lal Tripathi was shot dead by some motorcycle-borne miscreants in Lat Bhairao area under Adampur police station at around 7. 30 pm. The assailants fled after the crime. Sensation prevailed amongst the Congressmen and traders in the city following the incident.
Police launched a massive two-wheeler checking drive throughout the city but the assailants could not be traced. An FIR against two unidentified assailants was lodged with the police.
According to information, Ram Lal Tripathi, a resident of Garwasi Tola in Chowk area, was the member of Pradesh Congress Committee. He also owned a Dharmshala for pilgrims on the bank of the Ganga in Rajghat. He was returning from the Dharmshala on Friday evening by his bike when at around 7. 15 pm, he was shot dead near Lat Bhairao area from point blank range.
The Congress leader, who was hit by two bullets in his head and chest, fell on the road from the bike. Meanwhile, the assailants fled the scene through a nearby lane. Cops who rushed to the spot on getting the news, took Tripathi to the BHU hospital where doctors declared him dead.
Tripathi’s supporters beat up two Congress activists outside the hospital for some unknown reason.
The news of the murder spread like a wild fire in the city and Congressmen in large number, including local MP Dr Rajesh Mishra and district president of Youth Congress Dr Daya Shanker Mishra, reached the hospital and consoled the bereaved family members.