Killers wanted to become ‘popular and big gangsters’

Killers wanted to become ‘popular and big gangsters’

On Sunday, April 16, the three assailants arrested for shooting mafia brothers Atiq Ahmed and Ashraf Ahmed dead confessed that they killed the two to ‘become popular and become big gangsters’.

Booked under IPC sections 302, 307, and Arms Act sections 3, 7, 25, 27, and Criminal Law Amendment Act section 7, the three assailants identified as Lovelesh Tiwari, Sunny Singh, and Arun Maurya told the police about the motive of the crime.

When police asked them why they did it, they said that they wanted to wipe off the Atiq-Ashraf gang and earn a name for themselves in the state which would help them in future. This has been revealed in the FIR filed by UP Police in the case.

According to the FIR, the accused persons said that they could not escape after shooting Atiq and Ashraf dead as they failed to anticipate the police cordon present there.

“We planned to assassinate Atiq and Ashraf by posing to be local news reporters and blending in with the crowd the moment we learned that they are being taken into custody by the police,” the FIR reads.

The FIR further gives several other crucial information regarding the case and the involvement of Atiq Ahmed with the criminal world and terror groups in Pakistan.

Atiq Ahmed’s ISI and Lashkar connection

The FIR further states that Atiq Ahmed confessed that he has direct connections with Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba. Weapons from Pakistan are dropped on the Punjab border with the help of drones and people in Punjab associated with the ISI collect these weapons and distribute them among LeT terrorists, others to Khalistani terrorist organizations, and some firearms such as .45 Bore pistols, AK-47s, sten guns and RDX are supplied to Atiq Ahmed.

“I made payments for these weapons and people belonging to these organizations. These people used to visit him often and through their conversations I got to know that they were planning to do something big in the country. I know one person from ISI who dealt in arms and from whom I procured weapons to kill Umesh Pal and his guards,” Atiq Ahmed told the police as mentioned in the FIR.

According to the FIR, on 14 April, Asad and Ashraf could not be questioned much as they were upset due to the death of Atiq’s son Asad in a police encounter. They also said that they were feeling unwell.

Detailed questioning of Atiq and Ashraf was done on 15 April, where they informed the location of the weapons used in the Umesh Pal murder. Based on their confession, one .45 bore pistol, one .32 bore pistol, 58 live cartridges of two different bores were recovered. Among the ammunition were five 9mm cartridges made in Pakistan’s ordnance factory. After the recovery of these weapons, additional charges under the Arms Act were slapped against them.

After they again complained about feeling unwell and scared, after after seeing that their conditions were not good, the police took them to the hospital for a health checkup. Accordingly, they reached the medical college and hospital in the evening. When the police were taking Atiq and Ashraf to the main gate of the hospital after deboarding the vehicle, reporters surrounded them to ask questions. The police arrived at the medical college at around 10.35 p.m. With the media all around them, they had taken no more than 15 to 20 steps when they stopped to give the byte to the media present there.

According to the FIR, one reporter dropped his camera, and another dropped the microphone as soon as Atiq Ahmed and Ashraf began speaking to the media. Suddenly, both of them took out weapons in a swift move and shot at them from point-blank range. After they fell to the ground, the third shooter shot at them. All of these were captured in cameras.

While Atiq and Ashraf were the primary target, stray bullets hit some people, including one of the shooters and a policemen.

Accused Lovelesh Tiwari, some journalists, and a police officer were injured during the firing

It is stated in the FIR that accused Lovelesh Tiwari was injured during the cross-firing by the co-accused persons and is being provided medical attention at Prayagraj’s Swaroop Rani Hospital.

Mann Singh, a constable, was shot in the right hand during crossfire. Minor injuries were also sustained by a few of the journalists who were covering the incident. However, it is believed that they were not shot but they were injured due to the ruckus created by the incident. Taking prompt action, the police nabbed all the assailants and seized their weapons as well. Severely injured Atiq and Ashraf were brought to the hospital, where the doctors pronounced them dead.

Weapons recovered from the accused assailants and formation of three-member enquiry committee

According to the press note, the police have recovered one country-made 30 pistol (7.62), one made in Turkey 9 mm Girsan pistol, and another Turkey-made 9 mm Zigana pistol.

The government has sought a report from the three-member judicial enquiry committee looking into the killings of gangster-turned-politician Atiq Ahmad and his brother Ashraf within two months.

The committee will be headed by retired Justice Arvind Kumar Tripathi of Allahabad HC and will also comprise retired IPC officer Subesh Kumar Singh and retired District Judge Brijesh Kumar Soni. Earlier on Saturday, hours after the murder of the duo, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath took cognizance of the Prayagraj incident and ordered the formation of a three-member Judicial Commission (Judicial Inquiry Commission) in the matter.

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