Exactly a week ago, BJP MLA Jitender Singh Shunty met Delhi Police Commissioner B S Bassi along with several other Delhi BJP leaders to enquire about the status of his request for police security, which had been pending for the past one year. Bassi reportedly told the MLA that police were verifying his threat perception. On Wednesday, Shunty was shot at by an unidentified gunman, but he managed to dodge the bullet and lock himself inside his house.
Following the shooting, in which at least four shots were fired, Shunty has been provided with a personal security officer during the day and a guard for round-the-clock protection at his residence — in addition to two armed guards provided by the Punjab Police.
Shunty’s son Manish said his father had been attacked twice in the past and in 2013 the family had also received a threat call. Manish said in March 2007, while campaigning during the councillor elections, unidentified assailants had shot at his father’s car but he escaped unhurt. A year later, Shunty alleged that some men driving a large oil container tried to run him over.
“My father had written to Lt-Governor Najeeb Jung for security but did not hear from anyone. We even reminded the L-G about the letter. The area ACP has come to our house just now and we are discussing the security details with him,” Manish told Newsline on Wednesday evening. Shunty had also installed seven CCTV cameras outside his house a year ago.
Following the incident, BJP Delhi unit chief Satish Upadhyay said the L-G and Bassi had already been briefed about the security of MLAs. “It is imperative that such incidents should not happen again. The L-G and police commissioner should take stringent steps and form a plan. Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has also been briefed about the incident,” Upadhyay said.
BJP leaders said Shunty and his sister were actively involved in removing illegal encroachments of Bangladeshi migrants living in Seemapur and Dilshad Garden. Police said they would investigate if Shunty had made any enemies in the process.
Shunty described the firing on Wednesday. “I saw a well-dressed man outside my door asking me to attest a paper for him. I did not suspect anything as my house is on the main road. I have also seen people talking to each other with their helmet on. When the papers accidentally dropped from my hand, the man held my collar and tried to drag me. I thought I was being kidnapped and fought back. My neighbours saw the whole incident. It was a planned attack but God has saved me,” he said.
Shunty started his political career as an independent councillor from Jhilmil. In 2012, he joined the BJP and won the councillor elections from Jhilmil ward of the East municipal corporation.
In the last Assembly election, he won from the Shahdara Assembly constituency with 45,364 votes. His sister Preeti is a BJP councillor in the same civic body. Shunty runs an ambulance service in the city and resides in Jhimil Colony with his wife and two sons.