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Home / Delhi News / Delhi riots: Police arrest man for murder

Delhi riots: Police arrest man for murder

Police said they have recovered the country-made pistol used in Solanki’s murder

delhi Updated: Sep 06, 2020, 15:58 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Riots had erupted in the north-eastern parts of the national capital in February. Over 50 people died in the communal violence.
Riots had erupted in the north-eastern parts of the national capital in February. Over 50 people died in the communal violence. (REUTERS)

Delhi Police on Sunday claimed to have arrested the man who allegedly shot dead Rahul Solanki (27), one of the first victims of the riots that erupted in the north-eastern parts of the national capital in February. Over 50 people died in the communal violence.

The arrested accused, identified as Mustaqeem alias Sameer Saifi, a carpenter, was carrying a cash reward of Rs 1 lakh on his head.

Police said they have recovered the country-made pistol used in Solanki’s murder from Saifi, a class 10 dropout.

Solanki had stepped out of his house to buy milk when he was shot dead on February 24. The murder had occurred near Rajdhani Public School at Mahalaxmi Enclave in Mustafabad. Solanki’s family members took him to Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, where he was declared dead.

The murder probe was transferred from the district police to the special investigation team of Delhi Police’s crime branch.

Anit Mittal, additional spokesperson, Delhi Police, said: “While analysing the video footage of the violence, a man was spotted shooting Solanki dead.”

Soon, police teams were deployed at Mahalaxmi Enclave in Mustafabad to gather more information about the murderer. Informers were also activated in the neighbourhood to keep an eye on the suspects and collect information about the criminal, he said.

“On September 3, we received information that Saifi has been spotted,” Mittal said.

“Acting on the tip-off, a team raided the identified premises and Saifi was nabbed from Bhajanpura. His description matched with the shooter seen in the video footage. Saifi revealed his name as Mustaqeem during the interrogation. Initially, he had denied his involvement in the murder but later when confronted with evidence, he confessed to having opened fire at Solanki. A country-made pistol was seized that he had used during the riots,” Mittal said.

Police have seized the clothes --- a pair of jeans and shoes – and the helmet that Saifi was wearing at the time of his alleged crime and his mobile phone from him. “He also revealed that he had participated in protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), 2019 and the National Register of Citizens (NRC) near Farukia Masjid. The accused has been sent to judicial custody,” he added.

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