Union home minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday visited BJP leader Brijpal Teotia who is on life support at a Noida hospital after an armed attack in Muradnagar this week.
The minister consoled the family of Teotia, whose condition allegedly continues to be critical. The leader is said to be close to Singh.
Local BJP leaders said the minister spent nearly 10 minutes at the hospital and told senior police officials to track down the attackers at the earliest.
“He consoled Teotia’s family and assured them of full support. Doctors are monitoring him (Teotia)… Another operation…was carried out in the morning,” said Ghaziabad BJP unit city president, Ajay Sharma.
Police said nearly 250 officers, divided in 25 teams, have launched a search for the men who opened fire on Teotia and his aides on August 11.
The police believe Thursday night’s attack might have been fallout of a personal rivalry or a dispute with one Manoj of Mehrauli village.
Manoj and his family are on the run ever since the incident and their houses are locked.
“It is one of the key angles we are looking at during our investigations. We suspect the assailants were hired killers, but this can only be ascertained at a later stage. Sunita (Rakesh Hasanpuriya’s wife) is being questioned. Six people are being questioned,” said KS Emmanuel, senior superintendent of police (SSP), Ghaziabad.
Rakesh Hasanpuriya, an accused in multiple cases, was killed in a police encounter in Kavi Nagar, Ghaziabad in 2003.The family of the slain gangster believe Teotia and his close aide Inderpal Singh had tipped off the police about Hasanpuriya’s location before the encounter.
Police maintain that Teotia has had a long-standing rivalry with Manoj’s family in connection with several murders that took place in 1984, 1997 and 1999.
The BJP leader’s brother Vikas Teotia, however, rejected any claims of rivalry.
“My brother was targeted as he was gaining popularity among locals at Murad Nagar to win a ticket for the upcoming Assembly elections. We have never had any links with Hasanpuriya or any rivalry with Manoj or his family,” he said.