Three members of biker gang arrested in Delhi (Lead)

August 1st, 2008 - 10:15 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 1 (IANS) Three members of a notorious gang of trigger-happy bikers who had unleashed terror in the capital by robbing more than a dozen people and shooting dead at least four, have been arrested from a south Delhi area, the police said Friday. Nasir alias Zakir, 27, was arrested from Badarpur area Thursday evening when he went to meet the wife of another gang member, Israil alias Ajay Bidhuri, along with his two accomplices Mushtaq Ahmed, 24, and Rakesh, 28. Nasir was involved in at least 18 cases of murder, dacoity, robbery, kidnapping and snatching, the police said.

The police said Ahmed alias Munna Khan and Rakesh alias Chholewala were not directly involved in the crimes, but were arrested for providing logistics and hideouts for the gang members.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (South Delhi) H.G.S. Dhaliwal said robbery was the main motive behind all the incidents.

“Bikes were just used as a tool to rob the people. They only robbed Pulsar motorcycles because of its speed and high performance. They were not selling or disposing them off.”

“If one bike broke down they would steal another. The reason behind killing the owners of these motorbikes was to avoid identification and evade arrest. They did not even hesitate to kill people for amounts as meagre as Rs.2,500,” Dhaliwal told reporters.

“The other reason to kill was to get the original papers and keys of the bike, which owners invariably keep in the vehicles. With the original papers in their possession they knew police would not doubt them and they would easily get scot free,” he added.

The gang’s kingpin Om Prakash alias Bunty and three others, identified as Israil, Rajesh Sharma alias Panni and Kalu aka Om Shiva, are still absconding. The police said raids were being conducted in their possible hideouts in Delhi, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana.

Delhi Police chief Y.S. Dadwal had declared a reward of Rs.50,000 for anyone providing information about the gang members.

Dhaliwal said Bunty, who is wanted in 22 cases of murder, snatching and dacoity, had formed the gang during his stay in jail last year.

“Between June 28 and July 17, the gang committed crimes in Delhi and fled to a village, Garhi Shhedra in Noida, and stayed there. Their photographs were released to the public at the time. They committed most of the crimes during that period,” Dhaliwal said.

They also avoided suspicion during their stay in the village. Israil and his wife Guddan had taken a house on rent in the village.

“They told villagers that they were recovery agents and had picked up bikes from people who were not paying their bank loans. They also shared drinks with villagers to avoid any suspicion,” he added.

The police said the gang was very specific in selecting the village in Noida, as one of them was very familiar with the area and knew all the routes. But when the police released their photographs, they left the place overnight and fled to other states.

The biker gang first made news July 5 when its members gunned down property dealer Sonu, 25, outside his Sangam Vihar residence. That day, they shot at a man and robbed his Pulsar bike in the same area.

They robbed the owner of a TV showroom in the Kalkaji area and the customers during daylight the next day. After the incident, the traders blocked traffic movement in the area and staged a protest. The police had to resort to baton charge. The same day they robbed another Pulsar bike from Defence Colony area at gunpoint.

On July 11, the gang killed two friends - Ashneet Singh, 24, and Harjeet Singh, 26 - in Amar Colony near Lajpat Nagar. Barely a few minutes later, they shot dead Sanjeev Suri, 30, near the Andrews Ganj crossing when one of the motorcycles they had stolen ran out of fuel.

The very next day the gang shot Naresh and Pawan, both in their 30s, in south Delhi’s Dakshinpuri area. On July 21, they robbed a Pulsar motorcycle from Okhla area.

After carrying out a series of robberies and killing people in south Delhi, the gang robbed and beat up a motorcycle rider in Mayur Vihar area. They also carried out robberies in two shops in east Delhi.

Dhaliwal said the gang committed a series of robberies in Noida and looted many people at gunpoint.

“We are in hot pursuit of other members and they would be arrested soon,” he said.

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