Police yet to determine source of AK-47 rifle used in Teotia attack

  • Peeyush Khandelwal, Hindustan Times, GHAZIABAD
  • Updated: Aug 18, 2016 00:24 IST
The police said that they have contacted the National Crime Records Bureau, state crime records bureau and Army units to trace the origin of the weapon. (Sakib Ali/HT)

Police teams are working round-the-clock to trace the origin of the AK-47 assault rifle and other weapons used in the attack on Bharatiya Janata Party leader Brijpal Teotia on August 11 at Rawli Road in Murad Nagar.

Four suspects were arrested on Wednesday for leading the attack and participating in the conspiracy, police said.

Sources in the UP special task force said that the police teams are also probing whether the AK-47 and its ammunition was ‘hired’ as several gangs in western UP are known to have access to the rifle.

However, Sujit Pandey, inspector general (Meerut zone) said that the police has credible information as to where these weapons came from.

“We are working on tracing these weapons, including the AK-47. We are in touch with National Crime Records Bureau, state crime records bureau and even Army units to find out the origin of the weapon. A similar weapon was robbed in an incident in Rajasthan. We have not sent teams to the valley (J&K) for gathering information on the AK-47,” Pandey said.

Nearly 50-60 rounds were fired on the Scorpio that was occupied by Brijapl Teotia and five of his aides, including private guards. Teotia’s Scorpio was cornered by assailants near the telephone exchange on Rawli Road in Murad Nagar town of Ghaziabad.

Besides the AK-47, police had also recovered Indian Ordnance Factory made pistol, an Italy made Beretta pistol, live ammunition and one fully loaded AK-47 magazine.

Police said they the use of AK-47 in the incident has taken them by surprise. According to data from ministry of home affairs, more than 36,000 illegal weapons were seized across the country from January 2012 to January 2015. Of these, nearly 47% were seized from Uttar Pradesh.

According to Ghaziabad police records, nearly 500 pistols, 5 Sten guns, 9 revolvers were recovered from suspected criminals in 2015, besides rifles, single-barrel and double-barrel guns. Two hand grenades were also recovered from a gang at Loni in November, 2015.

In October last year, the UP special task force had nabbed gangster Mukeem Kala and his aides, and recovered an AK-47, a magazine for the rifle and 93 live cartridges from their possession. Also, 114 live cartridges and weapons such as .30, .38 and 9mm caliber pistols were recovered.

Earlier, unidentified assailants, believed to be led by Amit Kasana, had allegedly resorted to indiscriminate firing, using an AK-47 rifle, over their rivals from Sundar Bhati’s group at a banquet hall in Sahibabad on November 11, 2011. Four persons were killed during the incident.

In September 2015, a Ghaziabad court acquitted the nine accused in the case, including Kasana, because the prosecution could not prove its case and majority of the witnesses had turned hostile or retracted their statements.

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