A father and son received bullet injuries after a group allegedly fired upon them when they were returning from a local market in Tiljala around 7.30am on Saturday, police said.
Police said three rounds were fired that left Raju Roy, a taxi driver and his father Shib Charan nicknamed Doublu, injured.
They were shifted to a local hospital soon after the incident. Till late Saturday evening, doctors said their condition was “critical”.
Investigating officers have learnt that Raju and his father had given some amount to a local gang that was into developing plots of lands along Tiljala Road for real estate development against the promise of high returns.
A team of police officers have launched a search for the gang after collecting information from a section of local residents, a few of whom had witnessed the early-morning shoot out in the congested Tiljala locality.
The members of the gang had allegedly threatened to kill Raju if he persisted with his demand of returning his money.
Investigators are searching for two local youths, Jibat Roy and his brother Vinod, for allegedly opening fire on the father-son duo after attacking the son with a chopper.
Three other youths were present with the two brothers. They left the spot by scaling terraces and rooftops of buildings that are located adjacent to one another inside a dingy lane in Tiljala in the eastern fringes of the city.
Police officers believe the gang ran along the railway tracks between Ballygunge and Park Circus railway stations to some unknown destination.
“Three rounds have been fired upon. We are still trying to ascertain what was the trigger behind the early morning firing,” said a senior police officer involved in the probe.
“We have already started checking if the accused have any criminal antecedence or not. Once the injured have stabilised we hope to talk to them as well,” the officer added.
Tijlala, once dotted with slums and hutments by families who migrated for work from parts of Bihar and Jharkhand, has been witnessing a recent boom in real estate primarily for its location, close to EM Bypass in the east.
While a few arterial roads still lack pavements, the boom has also resulted in an alleged spurt of illegal constructions in the area, bordered by Kasba in the south and Topsia in the north.
Investigators have gathered that a section of local residents of Tiljala were opposing Jibat and his gang’s activities in the area.
The gang members were allegedly drinking in the open and demanding money from small-time traders for a real-estate project that they had taken up a few months back.