‘Hindus will rule’, says man as he fires in the air at Shaheen Bagh
The gun shots were fired less than 150 metres from the protest site — the epicentre of anti-CAA protests in Delhi where hundreds of men, women and children are present daily. No one was injured.Updated: Feb 02, 2020 06:16 IST
Two days after a teenaged minor from Jewar opened fire at a group of protesting students near Jamia Millia Islamia, injuring one of them, a 23-year-old man from Delhi on Saturday fired two rounds in the air at the Shaheen Bagh protest site, where anti-Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) demonstrators have been agitating for over a month and a half.
The gun shots were fired less than 150 metres from the protest site — the epicentre of anti-CAA protests in Delhi where hundreds of men, women and children are present daily. No one was injured.
As he was being detained by the police, the man was caught on camera saying, “No other community will have a say in this country. Only Hindus will.”
Police arrested the man, identified as Kapil Gujjar, a resident of Dallupura in east Delhi. Police said he is married and has studied up to Class 12.
The man, they said, had claimed he opened fire because there was a wedding in his family and his relatives had problems going shopping to the Lajpat Nagar market due to the road blockade at Kalindi Kunj.
Since December 15, 2019, hundreds of residents have been protesting against CAA at road number 13A. The police have since blocked the road that connects South Delhi and Noida.
According to the senior police officers, the firing took place between 4.45pm and 5pm. “Eye witnesses told us that the man arrived in an auto-rickshaw around 4.30pm and went to a local tea shop. He sat there for about 15-20 minutes and then walked towards the protesters. He crossed the first barricade and after reaching the second one, he took out a pistol and fired one shot in the air. Before anyone could respond, the man fired another shot,” said a senior police officer.
Joint commissioner of police (southern range) Devesh Srivastava said some policemen who were standing near the barricade overpowered the man and his pistol was snatched. “We recovered only one pistol from him. He was immediately put in a car and was taken to Sarita Vihar police station. He has been booked under the Arms Act. He will be questioned to trace the source of the weapon,” the joint commissioner said. He added that security had been tightened in the area ad all visitors to the protest site were being frisked with the help of volunteers.
Srivastava said they were verifying if the man had any political affiliations.
According to eyewitnesses, the shooter was pointing his weapon at the protesters. “When I heard the first shot, I looked behind and saw him. Within seconds, he shouted ‘Jai Shri Ram’ and again opened fire. He was pointing his weapon towards the protest site. People ducked to protect themselves. We saw him trying to fire again but his weapon jammed,” said Ahtemama, a law student from Jamia Millia Islamia.
Another police officer, who questioned Gujjar after his detention, said the man claimed he was angry about the road blockade at Kalindi Kunj (connecting South Delhi and Faridabad to Noida).
“He said he had a wedding in the family and they had to often go to Lajpat Nagar market. Since they were having trouble accessing this stretch, he got angry and fired near the protest site,” the officer said.
Gujjar’s father, Gaje Singh, and elder brother, Sachin, who went to Sarita Vihar police station, told reporters they had they no clue about his plans. “We came to know through TV news channels that he was involved in this. He was not upset over anything particular but had been irritated over the road blockade in Shaheen Bagh as most of our relatives live there and accessing that area has been a problem,” the elder brother told ETV.
Sachin said that Kapil was very religious and participates in Kanwar Yatra every year. “We don’t know where he got the weapon from. He has never been involved in any criminal activity before,” the family said.