Armed assailants open fire on Lucknow builder in broad daylight, police suspect property dispute
In an incident that shocked the city, a Lucknow-based builder, Sunil Singh, 45, who is believed to be a close associate of a state minister, was sprayed with bullets in broad daylight on Saturday. Police said three motorcycle-borne assailants attacked him near his house in Ansal’s Golf City, under PGI police station limits in Lucknow.
He suffered four bullet wounds -- three in his right hand and leg and one on the right side of the chest below the lungs -- and is stated to be in a critical condition at the King George’s Medical University trauma centre in Lucknow.
Police said initial probe hinted towards a property dispute but the case was being further investigated.
Senior superintendent of police (SSP) Kalanidhi Naithani said, “The miscreants opened indiscriminate fire on a moving BMW sedan car of the builder in which he was heading to his office from his house at around 10.10 am.”
He said the victim’s office ‘Shiv Shakti Constructions’ was located at the Cyber Heights building in Vibhuti Khand. “The assailants were well aware of the builder’s daily routine of leaving his house at around 10 am. They laid a trap around the same time near the guard room of Sector C-1, nearly 700 metres away from his house in Sector C-3 of the housing colony,” said Naithani.
He said spot examination suggested that the assailants fired at least six rounds of bullets from two firearms of .315 bore and 9mm calibre.
The SSP said initial information collected from some eyewitnesses revealed that the assailants moved closer to the builder after firing at him. They tried to pull him out after opening his car door. “It appears the assailants shot at the builder from a short distance to ensure his death and then fled towards the Shaheed Path,” said Naithani.
A sub-inspector posted at the PGI police station said that a painter working at a house nearby came to the builder’s rescue after listening to sound of gunfire. He also informed the police about the incident.
“The eye witness informed us that the builder himself made a call to his wife Ranjana Singh, who reached the spot within five minutes in another car and rushed him to the Ram Manohar Lohia hospital from where he was later referred to the trauma centre,” said the S-I.
Police said an FIR of attempt to murder had been registered against three unidentified assailants on the complaint of the builder’s wife. “The complainant has not mentioned suspicion on anyone but an eyewitness revealed some details about two assailants whose faces were uncovered. The third assailant was wearing a helmet,” said the S-I.
A few people close to the builder’s family said that Singh’s construction business grew over the past 10 years, sharpening his rivalry with many other builders.
They said he had two children, 20-year-old son Aditya who is pursuing higher studies in London, and 18-year-old daughter Sunidhi who studies in Bengaluru.