In another incident of police being at the receiving end of the law-breakers’ blows, one policeman died while another was injured when cattle smugglers crushed them under the speeding wheels of their vehicle in Gadarpur area in Udham Singh Nagar on Saturday night. While the one cop died on the spot the seriously injured Jitendra Kumar is now being treated at a local hospital.
Uttarakhand Vidhan Sabha Speaker Govind Singh Kunjwal expressed outrage over the incident, while conveying his condolence to the bereaved family members of the slain policeman Basant Singh Bora, resident of Pithoragarh. Kunjwal assured the bereaved family members that he would see to it that stringent action is taken against the accused.
Bajpur circle officer Rajiv Mohan said that six teams have been formed and deployed at various places to nab the accused. Teams are pulling out all the stops to have the accused arrested at the earliest, he said, adding that police had got some clues which would help them to identify and arrest the accused soon.
A Gadarpur police station officer said that the team had raided several suspected hideouts of the cattle smugglers. Some team members are working jointly with the police of neighbouring district in Uttar Pradesh to crack the case, he added.
A case under sections 302/307/332/353/504/324/506/452/380 of IPC was registered against four unidentified cattle smugglers in Gadarpur police station, he informed.
It is learnt that four unidentified persons reached one Bhukan lal’s house in Mahtosh village at Gadarpur around 1 am on Sunday to steal his domesticated cattle. Hearing some noise, Bhukan lal got up and found the accused lifting up his buffaloes in a pick-up van. As he and his wife Shakuntala resisted them while screaming for help they were taken into a room where they were beaten up severely.
However, as the couple continued yelling the nervous criminals fled towards Nawabganj near UP border, leaving the buffaloes behind.
With the locals having informed the police of Mahtosh police post (temporarily), the police Chowki in-charge informed the Ratanpura Nawabganj check post policemen, Basant Singh Bora, resident of Pithoragarh and Jitendra Kumar, resident of Haridwar, asking them to act swiftly and apprehend the escaping cattle smugglers.
The cattle smugglers allegedly broke the barricade put up by police and crossed the State’s border into Uttar Pradesh. However, ten minutes later, the criminals allegedly returned and rammed the van they were on into the two-wheeler the cops were riding. While Bora was crushed under the wheels and died on the spot Kumar was seriously injured. There was another constable Subhash Joshi present there. He was attacked too, though he managed to save himself.
Notably, this is not the first such incident of cops being attacked by miscreants when the latter were asked to identify themselves. On July 21, Dehradun police arrested a Tibetan, owner of a Dehradun-based restaurant, for allegedly pressing his two-wheeler’s key into an eye of a head constable when the latter stopped his bike and asked him to show documents during a vehicle-checking drive in Clement Town area. He was later sent to jail.
In another incident, two constables- Angeshwar and Anuj- of Dhara Chowki were stabbed by a miscreant later identified as Boxer Raju, resident of Chakkhuwala on Naishwala Road, on September 29, 2013.
Critics opine that police need to be more alert when they are on duty. “They need to be given training on how to deal with such miscreants. We hope, the police brass would sit up following this incident and do something to stop such incidents from recurring,” one of them said.