Gorakhpur Murder: ‘Police Removed Names of 3 Cops From FIR,’ Says Victim’s Wife
Meenakshi has also alleged that the hotel cleaned all the blood, further suggesting a cover-up.
Video Producer: Shohini Bose
Video Editor: Mohd. Irshad Alam
In relation to the death of a 38-year-old businessman from Kanpur during a late-night police raid in UP's Gorakhpur, the victim's wife confirmed that a viral video, showing Gorakhpur SP Vipin Tada and District Magistrate Vijay Kiran Anand discouraging Gupta’s family in registering an FIR against the cops, is true.
However, the victim's wife, Meenakshi, said that the pressure was there before registering the First Information Report (FIR).
Later, when Meenakshi protested, a FIR under sections of murder was registered against six police personnel involved in the raid, on condition that three named persons be marked as unidentified.
The deceased, Manish Gupta, was cremated on Thursday morning. Though the cops were previously suspended, no arrest has been made so far. The family is now demanding a CBI probe in the case.
Allegations of a Cover-up
In a video that has emerged since the incident, DM Anand can be heard saying, “I can assure you that the probe will be unbiased…I request you as an elder brother… Once a case is lodged, it goes on for years to come.”
Assuring Gupta’s wife Meenakshi that the cops will not be reinstated unless given a clean chit, SP Tada adds, “They (the cops) did not have any enmity. They went wearing police uniform.”
Meenakshi replied in the video, “They should either be removed completely, or I want a life for a life.”
Responding to the clip, SP Tada said, “We had gone to meet the family and address their grievances. District magistrate and I held talks for more than two hours. There were local journalists present. We took the complaint from the family and later registered an FIR. A small clip of the conversation without context is being circulated.”
When asked if the SP and DM put pressure on her, Meenakshi, in an interview to the press, said it was before the case was registered.
The FIR at Ramgarhtal Police Station in Gorakhpur (CM Yogi Adityanath’s constituency) is lodged under IPC Section 302 (murder), against Ramgarhtal SHO Jagat Narayan Singh and Sub-Inspectors Akshay Mishra and Vijay Yadav, apart from three unidentified policemen.
Further, in another video that went viral, Meenakshi is seen crying at the hotel where the incident took place, alleging that the hotel cleaned all the blood, further suggesting a cover-up.
The post-mortem report has revealed several injuries sustained by Gupta, including an abraded contusion swelling in the middle of forehead, "cutting brain skull underneath brain haematoma present”, lacerated wound over right arm, “abraded contusion on left upper lid while cutting skin underneath haematoma present”, among others.
The cause of death says “coma antemortem injury.”
SP Tada was quoted as saying that the post-mortem report showed three injuries — on the right elbow, forehead, and an eyelid, Indian Express reported. He adds, “As per the report, the cause of death is coma. All injuries are superficial.”
Meanwhile, Kanpur Police Commissioner Asim Arun said Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, will meet the family in Kanpur on Thursday. The government has also announced compensation of Rs 10 lakh for the family,
An Unfortunate Accident
The UP Police on Wednesday, said in a tweet that what had happened was “unfortunate” and added, “Policemen have been suspended & an FIR has been lodged against them under relevant sections. ADG/DIG/ SSP Gorakhpur have been directed to take action against the guilty after the investigation.”
One of Gupta’s friends, Hardeep Singh Chauha was quoted as saying, "They appeared drunk. I was slapped by one of the policemen. Some of the policemen had guns. The cops then took me outside. A while later, I saw Manish was being dragged out of the room by the cops and there was blood all over his face," NDTV reported.
The Police have maintained that Gupta died in a fall while they searched the premises of Krishna Palace Hotel as part of a routine check, Indian Express reported.
What the Family Has Demanded:
Meenakshi has alleged that “he (Gupta) was assaulted, resulting in serious injuries and death” and written a letter to the CM with the following demands:
The case be probed by the CBI.
The trial be held in a fast-track court in Kanpur as she can’t travel to Gorakhpur frequently.
Action be taken against the hotel where the death occurred.
The letter says, “I live with my father-in-law, who is a senior citizen, along with my son who is five. I have no source of income. I request you to ensure that my family gets justice. I should be given a government job… We should be given compensation of Rs 50 lakh”, Indian Express reported.
Police Commissioner Arun was reported as saying, “Their demands are genuine, that a fair probe be done… Their request for compensation and a job will be sent to the government… The incident is very tragic… We are with the family.”
Meanwhile, opposition leaders visited Gupta’s home on Wednesday and condemned the police action.
Hitting out at Adityanath, former CM and Opposition leader Akhilesh Yadav blamed the incident on the "culture of encounters" in UP, the practice of which, he claimed, was started by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, the General Secretary of the Indian National Congress, also tweeted that the current UP government is an enabler to such instances. She claimed that the police is barbaric to the common folk, and soft towards criminals.
Bahujan Samad Party (BSP) president and former CM of Uttar Pradesh, Mayawati, also took to Twitter to criticise Adityanath and the BJP government. She claimed that this incident has revealed the true nature of law and order in the state. She, on behalf of BSP, demanded that justice be provided to the victim's family at the earliest
(With inputs from The Indian Express and NDTV)
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