An empty cartridge fired from the chamber of a double-barrel half gun, a logo of the Indian Army and eyewitness accounts of a wedding guest firing gunshots — these were clues the Delhi Police had to solve the death of a car mechanic in northeast Delhi’s Welcome.
To find the gunman, reportedly a wedding guest, a team from Welcome police station landed at two wedding functions and questioned guests — until they finally tracked down the accused to Nangloi. DCP (northeast) A K Singla said the accused, Rajesh Kumar, is a former Indian Army personnel currently working with the Defence Security Corps. “He was on his way to a wedding and was carrying his double-barrel half gun, procured while he was posted in J&K,” Singla said.
Police said Kumar and his wife were on their way to a relative’s wedding on November 30 when the incident took place. “The couple were in their car but Kumar did not know the way to the venue. So he parked his car and decided to board a bus the baraat was travelling in. Before getting out of the car, Kumar was putting his gun inside a cover when he inadvertently pulled the trigger. The bullet hit three people passing through the area. One of them, Bhanu Pratap, died,” the DCP said.
Police were alerted about the incident, and eyewitnesses told them the gunman was a wedding guest. Police then inquired about weddings in the area and started tracking a blue Volkswagen based on a tip-off.
The team tracked the car that was last spotted in Bhopura, UP. “We followed the baraat, figured out the wedding venue and traced the owner. But the driver of the car was not who we were looking for. He, however, gave us some clues — that the shooter was in a Datsun Go with an Army logo,” a police officer said.
Police then tracked another baraat on its way to Nangloi. “By the time we reached the venue, celebrations were in full swing. People at the wedding refused to cooperate and denied knowing the shooter,” the officer said. Eventually, police tracked the number plate of the car using local CCTV footage. Police said the accused was arrested and a case of murder was registered against him at Welcome police station.