The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Cops face fruit mart murder fury

Irked by police inaction, traders of the Mechhua fruit market on Saturday gheraoed the Jorasanko police station demanding immediate arrest of the culprits involved in the murder of Haji Taj Mohammed, former president of the fruit market, on Wednesday night.

“The police are simply sitting idle. Not a single person named in the FIR has been arrested even three days after the murder,” alleged traders who took the lawmen by surprise with their sudden siege around 12.30 pm. The gherao was lifted after officials from the Lalbazar headquarters intervened.

Later, a delegation led by Calcutta Fruit Merchants’ Association general secretary Iftakhar Alam met deputy commissioner of police, central, Zulfiquar Hasan. “We informed him (Hasan) about the deteriorating law and order situation in Mechhua,” said Alam.

Four youths had forced their way into Taj’s office on Ballav Das Road and pumped several bullets into him last Wednesday. “Personal vendetta cannot be ruled out as a motive behind the killing either, as the youths also stabbed the dead Taj Mohammed several times before fleeing,” said a senior officer of Jorasanko police station.

Aggrieved fruit merchants of Mechhua bazaar wrote to the commissioner of police asking for his intervention to speed up the probe. “The culprits who tried to kill Taj in March 1999 are roaming freely too. We are afraid that those involved in criminal activities inside the market will take this opportunity to unleash a reign of terror,” the merchants said.

The police, meanwhile, picked up several persons for interrogation during the day. “We hope to achieve a breakthrough in the next few days,” Hasan said.

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