The Chandannagar Police Commissionerate, West Bengal got a major breakthrough with the arrest of the two prime accused in the Municipal Chairman murder case.
On November 22 night, Manoj Upadhyay, Chairman of the Bhadreswar Municipality was shot dead by assailants in the Hooghly district of West Bengal.
Upadhyay's family in the FIR had named certain persons including Ratan Chaudhary and Raju Chaudhary and independent Municipal Councilor Raju Kumar Shaw.
Chintu Dubey, the person driving the bike on which the Chairman was riding had named Ratan and Raju Chaudhary as being part of the group that had stopped the bike and shot Upadhyay in cold blood.
Ratan and Raju had been absconding following the incident. Police had launched a manhunt for the FIR named.
On Monday night a West Bengal police team along with the Uttar Pradesh Police raided a Hotel in Benia Bagh, Varanasi.
Along with Ratan and Raju, 5 others were arrested. The arrested include Krishna Chaudhary, Akash Chaudhary, Rajesh Chaudhary, Santosh Prasad and Debu Pakhrey.
They will be produced at the Varanasi Court before being brought to West Bengal on transit remand.
Prior to these arrests, one Munna Rai had also arrested from the Hooghly district.
The cell phones of the accused were tracked which finally led to their hideout in Benaras. Prior to this, they were hiding in Bihar.
Prima facie the Chairman knew both the assailants. However, with the two getting involved in criminal activities including extortion, syndication, Upadhyay had distanced himself from the two. He even had stopped some of their illegal activities. The murder could have been a fall out of this, feel Upadhayay's family members.
The incident had occurred at around 10:45 pm on November 22, when Chairman Manoj Upadhyay was returning home from the Jai Bharat Sangha club. Upadhyay used to visit the club daily and return home at this time.
He was on a bike. His name was called out by a group of 15 or 16 odd men standing on the GT Road near the Hanuman Mandir in Gatebazar area. Chintru Dubey who was driving, stopped the bike group when they started firing.
Five rounds were fired after which the assailants fled on foot, Dubey had stated. Hearing gunshots locals rushed out from their homes to find Upadhyay lying in a pool of blood. He was shot in the chest and stomach.
He was rushed to the Chandannagar hospital where he was declared brought dead.
Upadhyay was a popular leader. There were widespread protests with an allegation of police inaction. Locals, family members, and Trinamool Congress supporters claimed that despite life threats that Upadhaya faced, the police had failed to take any preventive action.
Candlelight vigils and protests rallies took to the streets. There were major reshuffles in the rank and file of the police with Ajoy Kumar taking charge as the Commissioner of Police replacing Peeyush Pandey.
The OC of Bhadreswar Police Station Anudutyi Majumdar was "closed" for having failed to discharge duties.