Echoing the outrage over the brutal death of Narendra Kumar,the family of the alleged killer on Saturday had a word of praise for the young IPS officer.
We had heard about him. He was a good officer. My brother did not kill him deliberately because we did not have any enmity with him, said Vakil Singh,the eldest brother of Manoj Gurjar who was driving the tractor-trolley that crushed the 2009-batch IPS officer on Thursday.
My brother panicked because the officer pointed a gun at him, alleged the 34-year-old,eldest of the four brothers. The family owns sizable agriculture land right opposite the cluster of their houses. The family claims the officer slipped when he tried to hold the steering of the running tractor and got crushed. The vehicle lost its balance and the stone-laden trolley tilted.
Manoj,who has been remanded in police custody till Sunday,has claimed that he was on his way home carrying stones for the familys personal use. Besides the tractor-trolley seized by the police,the Gurjar family owns one more tractor-trolley and a four-wheeler.
Despite the high-profile nature of the crime and the ensuing politics,the MP police have not visited either the family or the quarry from where Manoj claimed to have sourced the stones.
Calling Kumars death accidental,the family blamed it on the corrupt local police who seize tractors and release it after extracting bribes of Rs 50,000 upwards,creating a sense of insecurity among owners that forces them to escape rather
than getting caught with their vehicles.
The family sent Manojs younger brother Ajay to get the tractor-trolley back. The police have since detained Ajay but have not charged him with any offence. Their mother who visited the police station alleged that both her sons had been stripped and beaten up.
DIG (Chambal) D P Gupta said neither Manoj nor any other family member had criminal history.
The police said they had an eyewitness,Kamal Singh Raje,a member of the Banmor Nagarpalika,who heard Manoj shout,Move away or I will mow you down before killing the officer.
He did not stop when ordered and killed the officer who persisted, said Gupta,adding the police were yet to come across involvement of any mafia so far.