Firing at wife: Suspended Punjab DSP Atul Soni surrenders
Nearly a month and a half after he allegedly shot at his wife, Punjab deputy superintendent of police Atul Soni, now suspended, surrendered before a Mohali court and was sent to judicial custody on Monday.
Soni, who was posted with the 82 Battalion of Punjab Armed Police in Chandigarh, was booked on January 19 hours after he opened fire at his wife Sunita Soni following an altercation at their house in Sector 68, Mohali. Soni didn’t join investigation and was placed under suspension. He also faces departmental inquiry.
Police took Soni to the civil hospital in Phase 6 for medical examination, after he was moved to the Rupnagar jail.
“We will be moving an application seeking production warrants of Soni and also seek his remand as we need to question him about the unlicensed weapon (that was recovered from his house after the crime),” said Harmandeep Singh Hans, superintendent of police (SP, investigation).
As per reports, the DSP had shoved his wife at a lounge bar in Sector 26, Chandigarh, following which they returned home in separate vehicles. On reaching home, they again started arguing, and in a fit of rage, he allegedly shot at her with a pistol, but the bullet missed her. Sunita lodged a police complaint, alleging she was being tortured regularly “physically, emotionally and mentally” by her husband. Sunita had even handed over to the police the pistol her husband had allegedly used to open fire at her.
The DSP was booked under Sections 307 (attempt to murder), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) and 498A (husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), besides the Arms Act at the Phase 8 police station in Mohali.
During the hearing of Soni’s anticipatory bail before a district court, Sunita’s lawyer had submitted that “a compromise has been effected between the parties”, following which Sunita, in an affidavit, also retracted from the allegations she had levelled against her husband. However, the Punjab and Haryana high court had refused to grant anticipatory bail to the cop, stating that “his custodial interrogation was required in view of recovery of illegal weapon from his house, as its source was yet to be unearthed”.
As he kept evading arrest, look out circular was also issued against him on February 25.