Denial of cooking gas is believed to have driven a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) constable to kill a senior official at the paramilitary force's group centre in Hyderabad.
The constable shot dead Additional Deputy Inspector General Syed Sirajuddin Khan on Thursday evening and also attempted to kill a deputy commandant before being overpowered by other officers at Chandrayangutta in the Old City.
Police said T Hanumantha Rao, hailing from Guntur district in Andhra Pradesh, shot dead Khan from close range. The constable, 33, reported for sentry duty at 6 pm. After collecting his Insas assault rifle and ammunition, he walked up to Khan's chamber.
The constable fired two rounds. One bullet hit Khan on his head and pierced through his eye. He was taken to Osmania Hospital where he was declared brought dead.
After killing Khan, the constable reportedly walked to the chamber of Deputy Commandant Kishore Kumar Arya. But he closed the door after being alerted about the firing. According to witnesses, an angry Rao banged and kicked at the door.
After some time, the deputy commandant came out and tried to grab the rifle from the constable. There was a scuffle and another shot was fired but it hit the ground. CRPF personnel rushed to the chamber and overpowered the constable. Arya suffered minor injuries in the scuffle and was shifted to the Osmania Hospital.
CRPF sources said the constable used to complain that he was being denied a liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) connection. He had met the two officers several times seeking a gas connection. He was also reported to be frustrated over the denial of leave to visit his village and was depressed because he did not have children.
The police, however, are not saying why exactly the officer was killed. "We are investigating the reasons for the murder," said Charminar Assistant Commissioner of Police B Reddanna.
The police have registered a case of murder and attempt to murder against the constable, who is being questioned. Khan was staff officer to CRPF Inspector General (southern sector) P Mallanna Goud. He hailed from Hyderabad and belonged to the Paigah family of Vicar-ul-Umra, who was the prime minister of erstwhile Hyderabad State in the 1890s. Khan joined the CRPF in 1974 as deputy superintendent of police.
He had also worked as commandant of the Rapid Action Force and served in Punjab, Jammu and Kashmir, Delhi and Mizoram. About two years ago he was posted here. He had won bravery awards thrice while with the CRPF. Khan lived at the CRPF quarters with his wife, son and daughter. His daughter is working with a multinational company while his son is a Class 12 student.
His father Abdul Ali Khan, who had served as a captain in the army of the erstwhile Hyderabad State, said: "My son was a very honest officer and won many rewards for his meritorious service and bravery. "He had always served away from home. When he was transferred here two years ago we were all happy. But did not know that this tragedy will strike the family."