Jailed former MP and don Atiq Ahmed, his younger brother and former MLA Ashraf and others have been booked for allegedly threatening and assaulting a prime witness in the BSP MLA Raju Pal murder case. Advocate Umesh Pal alias Krishna Kumar Pal, the complainant, has alleged that he was threatened and assaulted in court when he had gone to get his statement recorded in a kidnapping case. Umesh is the cousin of former BSP MLA Pooja Pal — Raju Pal’s wife, who is also the complainant in the murder case.
Atiq and Ashraf are the main accused in the murder case, which took place on January 25, 2005 in Dhoomanganj of Allahabad. The CBI is investigating the case following a Supreme Court direction of January 3, 2016. Ateeq is currently lodged at Deoria District Jail.
Umesh said while he was threatened and assaulted in January, 2016, his complaint was then turned down by the police. On the directives of the SSP, an FIR was lodged at Colonelganj police station in Allahabad on Sunday.
“An FIR against 24 named people, including Atiq and Ashraf, and 25 unidentified persons has been lodged on charges of issuing threats and assaulting Umesh Pal on court premises when he had gone to get his statement recorded on January 27, 2016,” Colonelganj police Station House Officer Avadhesh Pratap Singh said.
When contacted, Umesh said: “I had gone to the court to register my statement in a kidnapping case, the complaint for which was filed by me against Atiq, Ashraf and others in 2006. Atiq and Ashraf, along with their associates, threatened and beat me up on the court campus. Policemen deployed in the court had rescued me then.”
“After the incident, I lodged a complaint with Colonelganj police station, but the police did not register an FIR. I met senior police officials but nothing happened. On June 1, this year, I met Allahabad SSP Sureshrao A Kulkarni, requesting him that a case be lodged. The SSP assured that an FIR will be lodged following an inquiry,” he added.
“Umesh Pal is my cousin and also a prime witness in my husband’s murder case. The CBI has recorded our statements in the case,” Pooja said. Raju Pal was shot dead and his six supporters injured in an attack on January 25, 2005. The prime motive was said to be the Assembly bypoll, in which Raju Pal had defeated Ashraf from the Allahabad West seat. It had fallen vacant after Atiq won the Lok Sabha seat from Allahabad in the 2004 elections. Later, an FIR was lodged against 11 people, including Ateeq and Ashraf.
UP’s Crime Branch-CID had earlier investigated the case and filed a chargesheet against 17 accused, including Atiq and Ashraf, said Pooja. In 2006, she filed a petition in the Allahabad High Court seeking CBI investigation into the case. In 2014, the HC dismissed the plea, following which, she had moved the Supreme Court.