|BJP MLC Ashok Kumar Agarwal. Telegraph picture
Patna, July 18: A team of forensic experts visited the house of BJP legislator Ashok Kumar Agarwal in Katihar and collected blood samples and other evidence in connection with the murder of his employee Dheeraj Kumar.
Dheeraj was shot dead allegedly by Agarwal on Tuesday. The BJP MLC — a renowned industrialist of Seemanchal region — had gone into hiding after the incident, sparking tension in the border town, around 320km northeast of the state capital.
A two-member team, headed by forensic expert Vijay Kumar, reached Katihar from Purnea and collected blood samples from the spot. The team would submit its report in a day or two to ascertain whether the bullets that had hit Dheeraj were fired with the licensed weapon of the legislator’s bodyguard.
The autopsy report revealed that two bullets had hit Dheeraj, who died on the spot. Moreover, there six bullet marks on the wall of the room that was used for providing accommodation to the MLC’s security guards.
The disappearance of the MLC’s bodyguard, Brahmadeo Yadav, has deepened the mystery surrounding the murder. While the MLC claimed that his bodyguard had gone with acting superintendent of police Yugal Kishore Sinha and his weapon was seized, sub-divisional police officer (Sadar) Rajesh Kumar feigned ignorance about the cop’s detention.
“The statement of the MLC’s bodyguard has not yet been recorded. This is important to get a breakthrough in the murder case,” he said, adding that efforts were on to trace the policeman. Kumar said while the MLC had been made named accused, four other accused were unknown.
The FIR was lodged on the basis of information given by the victim’s brother, Neeraj. The MLC has not yet been arrested even as his name figured as the prime accused in the FIR. The police are tight-lipped about why Agarwal is not yet arrested.
“Talk to our seniors in Patna. We are not supposed to talk to the press,” said Sinha.
A group of residents and relatives of Dheeraj had staged a blockade on Katihar-Purnea road for several hours on Tuesday in protest against the murder and the police’s “failure” to arrest the accused. Traffic was restored late in the evening when the police pledged to arrest the accused at the earliest.
Police sources said Agarwal had allegedly lost his temper after Dheeraj (around 30) refused to go to Araria for supervising the road construction work allegedly being carried out by the legislator’s firm. Infuriated over the refusal, the MLC allegedly snatched the carbine of his bodyguard and fired at Dheeraj from close range.
The MLC denied the charge and said Dheeraj died in accidental firing.