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'Investigate His Friends': Wife of Varanasi Lawyer Killed at New Year's Eve Bash

He was shot following a heated spat over a 'casteist' remark at a party in Varanasi's Lalpur Pandeypur area.

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Following a heated argument over a purported casteist comment, an advocate named Raghvendra Singh was allegedly shot dead by a security manager, Hardendu Shekhar Tripathi, at a New Year's Eve party in Uttar Pradesh's Varanasi on Sunday, 31 December.

An FIR was filed under section 302 (punishment for murder) of the Indian Penal Code at Lalpur-Pandeypur police station on the same day.

According to Amit Kumar, DCP HQ/Crime in Varanasi, Raghvendra and Shekhar were friends.

"They were having a party in a closed lawns, without permission. Raghvendra had an argument with one of them, Shekhar and in the brawl, some casteist remarks were allegedly made. They were friends, the accused is a manager at a security company and seems to be his junior from school or college and both are over 40 years and it was in rage that Shekhar shot him."
DCP Amit Kumar to The Quint
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The Quint has accessed a copy of the FIR. According to it, the incident took place at 10:00 PM at Vidya Vatika Maqbool Alam road, near Tadikhana Tirahe of Hukulganj.

The FIR reads, "..All of a sudden Shekhar shot at Raghvendra and then fled the scene. By the time we reached the trauma centre, he was dead."

At the party, after Raghvendra arrived with his family and friends, lawn owner and security company operator Gaurav Singh and company supervisor and Nagwa resident Hardendu Shekhar Tripathi were also present here.

Both of them were allegedly under the influence of alcohol. Raghvendra was reportedly forcing Shekhar to join in the dance floor. An argument followed and in the heat of the moment, Shekhar fired three bullets, two of which hit the lawyer. He was shot in the chest and stomach.

Thereafter, Shekhar had reached the police station with his pistol himself.

'His Friends Need to Be Investigated'

Raghvendra was also a father of two children, a boy and a girl. The cremation was carried out on 1 January, Monday.

The late advocate's wife Neetu Singh told The Quint that she ascribes blame to Gaurav, his wife Poonam Singh, Shekhar and his wife Rinku Tripathi.

"They have killed my husband. They had a plan, they even increased the music volume and both the wives had cornered me at that time. I want proper investigation against these people," she told The Quint.

However, on the alleged 'casteist remark' accusation, Kumar said, "We are still investigating the casteist remark claim because all the people at that party left and went here and there. The postmortem was done on 1 January, we are yet to take all the statements."

Meanwhile, Raghvendra's friend and another advocate in Varanasi, Sameer Kumar Singh, stated that the media is publishing 'misinformation' about him and only what is stated in the FIR is the truth.

"He was like a brother to me. He was my friend and he was a very good person. He always worked as a strong advocate and fought many criminal cases. I know what a lovely man he was."
Advocate Sameer Kumar Singh to The Quint

In a span of 12 hours in Varanasi, another murder took place on the last day of 2023. This time of a Christian woman, Victoria, who was cleaning the premises of a church. The reason behind the murder is yet to ascertained.

(With inputs from Chandan Pandey)

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