Rahul Raj cremated amid tight security in Patna

October 29th, 2008 - 3:13 pm ICT by IANS  

Raj ThackerayPatna, Oct 29 (IANS) A Bihar youth killed in police firing in Mumbai was cremated here amid tight security late on Diwali night.Rahul Raj, 25, a resident of the Kadamkuan neighbourhood here was shot dead by police Monday after he attacked the conductor of a bus and fired at and injured a passenger. He also fired in the air, Maharashtra Police officials said.

Raj’s father K.P. Singh lit the funeral pyre late Tuesday night even as people across India were winding down after the Diwali festivities.

The residents of Kadamkuan did not celebrate Diwali Tuesday to protest Raj’s killing. Instead, hundreds of them, including students, participated in the funeral procession and attended the cremation to show their sympathy for Raj.

A relative of Raj said that soon after his body arrived here Tuesday night from Mumbai, the state government persuaded his family to perform the cremation late at night instead of on Wednesday in view of increasing tension and likely protests by the local people.

Raj’s father demanded justice for his slain son. “My son was killed in a fake encounter. It was a big conspiracy and a CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation) probe will bring out the truth,” Singh said here.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has also demanded a CBI probe into Raj’s killing.

Before being shot dead, Raj had dropped currency notes from the bus stating that he wanted to kill Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray for inciting his party workers to attack youths from Bihar who were in Mumbai for a railway recruitment examination. A Bihari youth was killed as MNS cadres ransacked the examination centre.

Terming Thackeray a “mental case”, Railways Minister Lalu Prasad has demanded he be arrested.

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