The family of murdered Hindutva leader Kamlesh Tiwari demanded that the National Investigation Agency should take over the inquiry in the case, The Indian Express reported on Sunday. Tiwari’s family also claimed that they had also made repeated requests for an upgrade in his security due to threats.
Tiwari, purportedly a member of Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha, was attacked inside his office in Khurshidbagh area in Lucknow on Friday. Two of the assailants had tea at his office, then slit his throat. They also took out a pistol from a box of sweets and shot him. Five people were detained in the case, and two released after interrogation.
“My father was killed despite having police security,” Tiwari’s son Satyam Tiwari said. “He had been demanding a security upgrade due to threats, but nobody paid attention. A few days ago, he had also sent a representation to the Lucknow district administration and the police in this regard.”
Satyam Tiwari said 16 police personnel were provided for his father’s security in 2016 but it was periodically downgraded with only one police gunner remaining before the incident occurred. The law student claimed the security personnel was not present when Tiwari was killed, and an inquiry should, therefore, be initiated against him.
However, the police has refuted the allegation, claiming that the gunner was present at the Hindutva leader’s home when he was killed on Friday. Another report, however, said that two gunners and a guard were assigned to his security.
Tiwari’s son said the family did not trust anyone. Satyam Tiwari said he did not know whether those arrested had actually killed his father or they were being framed. “If these are the actual culprits and the police have video evidence, the NIA should take over the probe,” he said, according to NDTV. “If they probe and this [the arrests] is proved, we will be satisfied. We do not have belief in this administration.”
Tiwari’s mother Kusum Tiwari alleged that a local politician had killed her son. She claimed the accused was a land mafia and had been engaged in a conflict with the family over a temple property. However, Satyam Tiwari denied it, and said the case was still pending in court and that he was sure the local leader was not involved.
Satyam Tiwari said the police had also denied their requests to handover the body and later used force. “When we protested, police used force, causing injuries to my brother and mother,” he said. “Later, they agreed to give us the body if we took it to Sitapur. We were forced to take the body to Sitapur at 2 am.”
Tiwari’s family and supporters organised a protest on Saturday and refused to perform his last rites. Lucknow Commissioner Mukesh Kumar Meshram met them and provided a written assurance that the cremation was done in Sitapur. They also promised the family compensation, and assured them that a Special Investigation Team would conduct the inquiry.
Uttar Pradesh Deputy General of Police OP Singh said the murder was caused due to “communal hate”, according to Hindustan Times. He added two more accused were absconding.
“We were confident we would solve the case in 24 hours and we have done so,” Singh told NDTV. “Based on clues we formed small teams and fanned out to UP and elsewhere. From the beginning, we had a hunch this was related to Gujarat.” Police said a sweets box was found in the crime scene with evidence. Singh also eliminated terror angle in the case.
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