Police officer suspended, three cops sacked for engineer’s murder

December 31st, 2008 - 9:47 pm ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, Dec 31 (IANS) Auraiya district superintendent of police Ekramul Haque was suspended and three policemen were dismissed for “dereliction of duty” after an engineer was murdered last week allegedly by a ruling party legislator, a top Uttar Pradesh police official said here Wedensday.”Haque has been suspended for dereliction of duty, while the services of Dibiyapur police station house officer (SHO) Hoshiar Singh and services of two gunners, Pal Singh and Gajraj Singh, provided to the legislator for personal security, have been terminated with immediate effect,” state Director General of Police Vikram Singh told a press conference.

“There was sufficient reason to believe that these three policemen were directly involved in the murder. Therefore, they have been booked both for murder (under section 302 of the Indian Penal Code) and for criminal conspiracy (under section 120-B),” Vikram Singh added.

On Dec 24, Public Works Department (PWD) executive engineer M.K. Gupta was beaten to death in Auraiya, about 225 km from here, allegedly for his refusal to cotribute Rs.5 million for Chief Minister Mayawati’s birthday bash slated for next month. Ruling Bahujan Samaj party (BSP) legislator Shekhar Tiwari was arrested later in the day on the charge of involvement in the murder.

Haque had gone on leave a day before the killing and resumed his duty the day after the murder.

Asked if the dismissal of the policemen without even a preliminary inquiry would not weaken the administration’s case against them, thereby enabling them to get reprieve from the court, a senior government official said: “We had to act fast to send out the message that the government means business.”

The opposition, however, maintained the action was taken only to help the culprits to get easily bailed out.

“It is quite evident that such a summary dismissal would make it convenient for each of the policemen to get reinstated with a judicial intervention,” said state Congress president Rita Bahuguna Joshi.

State Samajwadi Party acting president Shivpal Yadav added: “I am sure this is part of a larger pre-emptive design of a legal mind to actually save the culprits - by putting up a fa├žade of prompt action that was bound to be shot down by any court.”

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