Police on Thursday filed a chargesheet against Mamta Agarwal and her two guards, who are accused of gunning down two bouncers and injuring two others during an alleged trespass on 9A Short Street on November 11.
Mamta and the guards — Shafique Ahmed and Pramod Sau — have been charged with murder, attempt to murder and common intention (see chart).
The bouncers who were shot dead were Prasenjit Dey, 23, and Pikloo Acharyaa, 25. The ones injured were Jayanta Saha, 22, and Kaushik Addy, 22.
Dey and Acharyaa were shot in the head. Addy took a bullet in one of his eyes while Saha suffered cuts on arms after a bullet shattered a glass pane. The police said all four were part of a group that had raided the property in an attempt to evict Mamta, who ran a playschool at 9A, and other residents.
The chargesheet — running into 200-odd pages and containing names and statements of over 80 witnesses — was submitted at Bankshall court 88 days after the incident.
The police had on Wednesday filed a chargesheet for the alleged trespass, naming 18 accused, including a sub-inspector of Shakespeare Sarani police who has been arrested and suspended.
“The charges under the IPC sections that were slapped on Mamta Agarwal and the other two accused after their arrest have been retained,” said joint commissioner (crime) Pallab Kanti Ghosh.
The three were also slapped with charges under the Arms Act for illegal use of arms without a licence. The two guns that were allegedly used in the murder of the two bouncers were licensed in the name of Mamta’s mentor Ratan Lal Nahata, who claims to own 9A.
“We are waiting for the ballistic report of the guns. We will submit a supplementary chargesheet once we receive the report and the sanction needed from the head of the institution (commissioner of police in this case) to prosecute someone under the Arms Act,” Ghosh said.
On the morning of November 11, Mamta had alleged that she fired in self-defence as the trespassers had tried to rape her. However, on checking the footage of the CCTV cameras installed on the premises, the police claimed there was no evidence of sexual assault on Mamta.
“The footage showed that a group of men armed with rods had trespassed on the premises. But Mamta apparently was not attacked. She was seen tearing her own T-shirt,” said an officer
Police investigations have apparently revealed that Mamta had shot the first bullet, in the air. It was allegedly followed by a set of instructions to her guards, who took turns in firing at the alleged trespassers.
Though it is still unclear who had fired the bullets that killed the bouncers, the police said there is enough evidence to pin down the trio for opening fire with the “knowledge and intention” to kill.
“We have electronic evidence and statements of witnesses to prove that all three had opened fire. Since the guns changed hands and all the accused were shooting, it would be difficult to prove who had fired the bullets that killed the trespassers,” said an officer.
The next step will be framing of charges. “During the framing of charges, the court will examine the sections in light of details mentioned in the case diary and the nature of evidence submitted by the police. The court could retain or alter the charges,” said a criminal lawyer.
The police said they would file a third chargesheet, for a dacoity on the premises on September 15.