Six unidentified men gunned down a key accused in a double murder case in daylight on the Buxar civil court premises on Thursday.
Kamlesh Yadav (20) was returning to Central Jail after his hearing when the men opened fire from close range. The gunmen were wandering on the court premises. As soon as Kamlesh surfaced, around 10.30am, they aimed for his head and also fired in the air to create panic. The police accompanying Kamlesh fled instead of returning fire.
Kamlesh died on the spot. The gunmen also shot at another prisoner, Shashikant Mishra, injuring him seriously. The latter has been rushed to Sadar hospital. The criminals fired a few more shots and fled. Eyewitnesses said the accused had not covered their faces.
Kamlesh, a resident of Shiv Puri area under the jurisdiction of town police station, was accused in two recent murders in Nayee Bazar area.
Vishnu Dutta Dwivedi, an advocate, said: “The man was gunned down from very close range. The role of the police accompanying the convict is surprising. Instead of opening fire, they let go of the rope by which they held the man and fled. The crime took place near the custody room. A stampede-like situation followed. The police reached for their guns 40 minutes later after Buxar superintendent of police (SP) Baburam arrived. They opened fire in the air twice.”
The advocate also raised the matter of security of judges in court and the district administration officials, as the collectorate is close to the court. Many advocates protested the police inaction.
The Buxar SP said: “Today’s incident is the result of a gang war. Action will be taken against police personnel for their inaction. It is a matter of investigation.”
Shahabad range deputy inspector general (DIG) of police Amit Kumar Jain said: “There was dereliction of duty by the police. All seven police personnel have been suspended. A case will be lodged. Action will be taken against them.”
He said the murder was fallout of rivalry between two families.
On February 19, the Kamlesh group had killed Golu Yadav and Birendra Yadav for which he was arrested. The matter was pending in court. Kamlesh’s rivals knew he was to be produced in court today. A probe and raids are on.
Buxar SDPO Sunil Kumar said a motorcycle, six empty rounds and a country-made pistol were recovered from the site. Eyewitnesses said they had seen the men in the bike.