The Lucknow Police on Tuesday said that they have arrested an aide of gangster Vikas Dubey, and seized two rifles that were looted during the Kanpur encounter on July 3, in which eight policemen were killed, PTI reported.
Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Prashant Kumar said that Dubey’s aide Shashikant, who has been arrested, carried a reward of Rs 50,000 on his head. “Shashikant was an accused in the killing of eight policemen,” Kumar said. “He was arrested from Chaubepur around 2.50 am. During interrogation, he admitted to his involvement in the encounter at Kanpur’s Bikru and revealed that the looted AK-47 and INSAS rifles of Uttar Pradesh Police were hidden at Dubey’s house.”
The weapons and 20 cartridges, have now been recovered, Kumar said. The police officer added that out of the 21 accused identified in the Kanpur encounter case, six have been killed and four arrested so far, while the police are still searching for the remaining 11.
Shashikant’s family told The Hindu that on the night of the Kanpur incident, he came home after work, but fled with his father, Prem Kumar Pandey after firing started. His wife, Manu Pandey, claimed that he is innocent. She said he had fled only to avoid falling into the police trap. Prem Kumar Pandey was killed a few hours after the shootout.
Dubey was arrested in Madhya Pradesh’s Ujjain city on Thursday for the murder of eight policemen in a shootout in Kanpur’s Bikru village on July 3. He was killed in police custody on July 10, while allegedly attempting to escape.
The Uttar Pradesh government on Sunday formed a judicial panel to investigate the rise of Dubey and his alleged nexus with the police. Retired Allahabad High Court judge Justice Shashi Kant Agarwal will lead the committee, of which he is the only member.
On Saturday, the Adityanath-led government formed a Special Investigation Team to probe the deaths of the eight policemen. The investigating team will be headed by Uttar Pradesh Additional Chief Secretary Sanjay Bhoosreddy. The state government has directed the Special Investigation Team to submit its report in the case by July 31.
Dubey had more than 60 criminal cases against him, including murder and extortion. He was arrested previously on many occasions but was not convicted in any of the cases.