Sitapur police claimed to have gunned down an alleged criminal in an encounter in Ramkot area early on Saturday. Two policemen, too, were injured in the alleged encounter. A total of 58 people have been gunned down in alleged encounters since the Yogi Adityanath government came to power in the state last year.
According to police, 40-year-old Shareef Banjara, hailing from Lakhimpur Kheri, had 20 criminal cases against him, including attempt to murder, dacoity and theft. He carried a reward of Rs 1 lakh on his head, they added. He was wanted in connection with three dacoity cases lodged in 2016, said police. Sub-Inspector Mahesh Pathak of City Kotwali police station said a team, led by Inspector Jainudeen Ansari, was patrolling near Gaura village when they spotted three people on a motorcycle.
He claimed the team signalled the motorcycle to stop but those on it opened fire instead. “Police retaliated in self defence,” he said. In the crossfire, a motorcyclist and two policemen — Inspector Ansari and constable Ravi Verma — were injured. The other two motorcyclists escaped, he said. The three injured were rushed to the district hospital, where doctors declared the motorcyclist dead.
The injured policemen had suffered gunshot injuries on their hands, but their condition was stable, said S-I Pathak. Shareef Banjara was identified from a driving license found on the body, said police. They added that a .12 bore gun, a country-made pistol, cartridges and a motorcycle were also recovered from the spot of the incident.