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Wednesday, Sep 18, 2019

Meerut SSP to conduct inquiry into ‘live encounter’ incident in Ghaziabad

A team of SOG personnel, which is under the direct supervision of Akash Tomar, SP (city), is alleged to have carried out a ‘live encounter’ in the presence of media.

noida Updated: Jul 28, 2017 22:14 IST
Peeyush Khandelwal
Peeyush Khandelwal
Hindustan Times
It has been alleged that the encounter was staged.
It has been alleged that the encounter was staged.

The Ghaziabad police on Friday said that the senior superintendent of police, Meerut, will conduct an inquiry into the alleged ‘live encounter’ carried out by the personnel and officers from the special operations group (SOG) on the night of July 20. The inquiry is being monitored by the office of UP director general of police.

HN Singh, SSP Ghaziabad on Friday said, “An initial inquiry was conducted by Ghaziabad superintendent of police (traffic) and the inquiry is now assigned to SSP, Meerut.”

A team of SOG personnel, which is under the direct supervision of Akash Tomar, SP (city), is alleged to have carried out a ‘live encounter’ in the presence of media.

“I am yet to see the order for transfer of inquiry to SSP, Meerut. However, it may be due to an assistant superintendent of police conducting an inquiry. A lower-level officer or equivalent cannot conduct the inquiry. It has to be conducted by a higher ranked officer,” said Prashant Kumar, additional director general (Meerut zone).

The UP additional director general (law and order) had taken cognizance of the ‘live encounter’ and sought a preliminary report from SSP, Ghaziabad. During the operation, the Ghaziabad police claimed the arrest of Deepak Sharma around 9.30pm, on whom the Andhra Pradesh police have set a reward of Rs25,000. He was also allegedly involved in a robbery in Ghaziabad.

However, FIR number 1069/2017, lodged by Ghaziabad police at Kavi Nagar police station, states that Sharma was arrested at noon from Lak village in Muzaffarnagar earlier on the same day. He was later brought to Ghaziabad, after which the police recovered a pistol, live cartridges and Rs35,000 from the house of his accomplice, Happy.

The videos show a team of Ghaziabad police flagging down a bike near Kamla Nehru Nagar, firing multiple shots in the air and nabbing one of the fleeing bikers after a foot chase. The entire sequence of events was captured by a group of media persons who were present at the scene beforehand, leading to claims from some quarters that the event might have been staged.

The ‘live encounter’ also got a widespread media coverage.

However, the matter snowballed into a controversy when later it was later found that Sharma was arrested from Muzaffarnagar and already under police custody at the time of the ‘live encounter’.

Shyam Narayan Singh, SP (traffic), said that he recorded the statements of only four to five personnel, as others did not turn up for the initial inquiry.

“We are seeking original videos of the operation as the television channels showed only a part of it. The personnel are seen in the news but we have not come to a conclusion yet. Now, the inquiry will be conducted by SSP, Meerut who is a higher ranked officer,” Singh said.

Following the ‘live encounter,’ Tomar had also arrived at the spot and took part in a combing operation to trace the ‘second absconding accused.’ Tomar had broadcasted a message around 10.30pm on July 20 about two criminals on a bike opening fire on a police team in Kamla Nehru Nagar.

“Gzb. Ps Kavinagar, encounter between police and criminals in Kamla Nehru Nagar. There was 2 criminals on bike fired on police team. 7 to 8 round firing between police and criminals. One arrested, 1 pistol and bike recovered. Combing is continue for other criminal (sic),” Tomar had posted on WhatsApp around 10.30pm on July 20.

An hour later, he also posted the picture of arrested accused, Deepak.

Tomar said, “I was given the information and immediately went to the spot. Later, through media reports, I came to know that there were other angles to the story than what was claimed by the team.”

First Published: Jul 28, 2017 22:14 IST