UP Man Wanted For Deadly Shootout On Video Files Surrender Application

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Dhirendra Singh’s statement came after a BJP MLA defended him, saying he fired in self-defence

Lucknow:

Dhirendra Singh, who is accused of shooting dead a man – while in the presence of police and district officials – during an argument at a village in Uttar Pradesh’s Ballia, has filed a “surrender application” at a local court. Such an application allows an accused to surrender directly before the court concerned, which will then decide whether to send him to police or judicial custody.

So far the cops have arrested two people in connection with the violence, including Dhirendra Singh’s brother, and detained five others.

Dhirendra Singh and five others are currently on the run. The Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of UP’s Azamgarh range has announced a reward of Rs 50,000 for information leading to his capture. The original reward, announced by the Balia Superintendent of Police (SP), was for Rs 25,000.

Meanwhile, BJP MLA Surendra Singh – who is said to be close to Dhirendra Singh – has given police a week’s deadline to file a cross-FIR, which will include the accused’s version of events. Surendra Singh has also threatened the cops with an agitation if this is not done.

Late Friday night Dhirendra Singh emerged in a video message in which he refuted the charges against him and blamed the administration for the violence.

“I don’t know who fired. I was pleading with officials to save my family. They just stood there and watched… I am a soldier. I have always believed in serving my country. I urge the chief minister for a fair probe,” he said in the video.

His statement came hours after Surendra Singh defended him, saying that he fired in self-defence.

According to witnesses a fight erupted between the accused and Jai Prakash, the 46-year-old man who was killed. Dhirendra Singh, the ex-president of the BJP’s local ex-servicemen’s unit, allegedly fired thrice at Jai Prakash, triggering chaos at a meeting to discuss allotment of ration shops.

In his video message Dhirendra Singh claimed that, far from instigating the violence, he had warned authorities that it could erupt and alleged that officials were involved in it.

“I had warned them earlier that there was going to be violence. But they went ahead. Officials were involved in the violence yesterday. They took money,” he alleged, also blaming local officials and police for ignoring his request to deploy enough security for the meeting.

Dhirendra Singh also claimed that his family had been targeted in the violence that followed.

Sub Divisional Magistrate Suresh Chandra Pal and UP Police Circle Officer Chandrakesh Singh were suspended on the directions of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath soon after the incident on Thursday.

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