A businessman from Uttar Pradesh who had accused a suspended Indian Police Service officer of extortion has died of gunshot wounds, NDTV reported on Monday. Indrakant Tripathi was found with a bullet wound in his neck in his car on a highway near Mahoba town earlier this month, and had to be admitted to the critical care unit of a hospital.
Tripathi, who was involved in the mining industry in Mahoba, had earlier this month issued a video statement on social media, accusing 2014-batch IPS officer Manilal Patidar of corruption, threats and intimidation. The businessman had also said that if he were to die, Patidar should be held responsible.
Tripathi said Patidar demanded Rs 6 lakh from him, failing which a number of cases would be slapped against him, IANS reported. “If you contact any politician or get him to call me, I will not even stop short of murdering you,” Tripathi claimed Patidar had said. “Your death will seem like a suicide.” In an appeal to Adityanath, Tripathi demanded that Patidar be sacked, saying he feared for his life.
The day after Tripathi was hospitalised with gunshot wounds, Patidar was suspended on the orders of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath. A case of attempt to murder and extortion was registered against him and two other police officers based on a complaint from Tripathi’s family.
But Tripathi’s brother told the media: “We want that Patidar should be arrested. He is an influential person. He and his people can harm our family.” However, it is not clear who shot Tripathi or for what reason.
Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav attacked the Adityanath-led government in a tweet in Hindi. “The murder of Indrakant Tripathi, who had revealed corruption in the Uttar Pradesh government, has proved that the government’s ‘thoko’ [shoot] policy, police’s fake encounters and false cases against opposition leaders have sent the state into abyss,” he said.