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Bullet rips trader from behind

- Daylight murders on road make comeback

Patna, Dec. 21: The murder of a Bihta-based businessman this morning has apparently reminded people of the days when criminals used to pounce on victims like this.

According to police, Manoj Chourasia (31), a betel leaf wholesaler by profession, was on his way to his shop from his home on his motorcycle around 11am when he was shot by unidentified men at the middle of the Bihta overbridge, around 30km west of Patna.

“At present, we cannot say how many attackers were there and what exactly happened. We are looking for witnesses but no one has turned up yet. One bullet hit Chourasia on the back and he collapsed immediately,” said an officer at Bihta police station.

“The body has been sent for post-mortem and the matter is under investigation. Till now, we have not got any leads but are working on it,” he added.

Chourasia used to live in Bihta town and his shop was located at Bihta Bazaar, around 4km from his residence.

“Chourasia used to take the same route everyday. There are unconfirmed reports that he was carrying a bag, which had some money in it, and the motive of the murder was robbery. However, the police cannot confirm it at this time as the statement of his family is to be taken still,” another police officer said.

“Chourasia had a six-month-old daughter and a son aged around five-seven years. Things will get clear only after the family’s statement is recorded,” the officer said.

Police sources added that initial investigations were revealing an internal family conflict to the murder too.

“Though things cannot be said for certain, the motive of the killing, apart from a possible robbery, also hints at some family conflict. The police, according to the investigations, do not feel that a business conflict is the reason of the killing,” the officer added.

Several high-profile murder cases have hit Patna in the last two months with the men in uniform being not able to solve most of them till now.

The murder of businessman Ramji Prasad Gupta, which took place at the upscale Patliputra locality on October 24, still remains a mystery and so does the murder Kamal Sharma (58), an assistant at the Patna divisional commissioner office, who was killed in broad daylight in Danapur in October.

The murder of Rajnish Ranjan, a doctor by profession, which rattled the city on November 30, also remains unsolved with the police looking confused and talking about multiple angles in the case.

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