New Delhi: Notorious gangster Vikas Dubey has been killed in an ‘encounter’. According to reports, a vehicle in the convoy that was taking him from Ujjain to Kanpur overturned on Friday morning. The gangster snatched a pistol from an injured policeman and fired at the police. The police retaliated, killing him.
The superintendent of police, Kanpur west, told reporters that the police party asked Dubey to surrender. The gangster refused and fired at the police party, after which the police opened retaliatory firing in which Dubey was injured. He was brought to a hospital, where he died. It is yet unclear if the gangster was dead on arrival at the hospital or died there.
#WATCH Vikas Dubey attempted to flee by snatching pistol of the injured policemen after car overturned. Police tried to make him surrender, during which he fired at the policemen. He was injured in retaliatory firing by police. He was later rushed to the hospital: SP Kanpur West pic.twitter.com/ZajJVLNGBU
— ANI UP (@ANINewsUP) July 10, 2020
Dubey, who has more than 60 cases registered against him, had killed eight police officers – including a deputy superintendent – in Bikru village of Kanpur on July 3. He was on the run for nearly week before his arrest at the Mahakal temple in Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh on Thursday.
Five associates of the gangster were also killed by the Uttar Pradesh police in different encounters.
Because of Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath’s stated policy to kill criminals in encounters, civil society organisations had expressed concern that the gangster could be ‘eliminated’. While some quarters have said the killing subverts the legal process, it is also being welcomed in other quarters.
U.P Police you are “police”, not a rival gang member.
By killing #Vikasdubey , you have failed the eight colleagues who were killed by him. They needed justice,not revenge.
— vijaita singh (@vijaita) July 10, 2020
A petition had even been filed the day before in the Supreme Court, seeking security for the gangster. Lawyer Ghanshyam Upadhyay specifically stated in his petition that Dubey may be killed in an encounter.
Former top cop N.C. Asthana said the encounter confirms a ‘cover up’. On Thursday, he said that police are supposed to “secure their weapons by lanyards to prevent snatching” when in transit with suspects or prisoners. Dangerous criminals should also be handcuffed, he said.
Vikas Dubey killed? Really? The same stupid story, which they had for his aide Mishra. Tried to snatch weapon and run away! Only difference in script this time–the car overturned! Who in the world would believe in such an improbable story? That confirms–COVER UP COMPLETE NOW!
— Dr. N. C. Asthana, IPS (Retd) (1986-2019) (@NcAsthana) July 10, 2020
Though he was involved in many crimes, Dubey is said to have had the backing of various political parties in the past two decades. His clout was evident in 2001, when he killed a BJP leader in a police station but Dubey was acquitted when all the witnesses in the police station turned hostile during the trial.
Movement of vehicles stopped
Aaj Tak has reported that just before the ‘encounter’, the movement of vehicles near the convoy was restricted, raising suspicion that the incident may have been staged.
A team from the channel had been following the convoy that was taking Dubey from Ujjain to Kanpur. According to the report, at around 6:32 am, the STF team entered Kanpur. All other vehicles were suddenly blocked by the police, who barricaded the road, the report said.
After the vehicle that the Aaj Tak reporters were in was checked, it was allowed to proceed. But by then, one vehicle in the convoy had already overturned and the ‘encounter’ had occurred, the report says. The team reached the spot at7:12 am, the report says.
Other reporters also suggested that the movement of vehicles was blocked before the encounter.
Media personnels were following the police vehicle carrying #VikasDubey
One by one all of them manhandled & stopped.
Finally near Barra #VikashDubey was shot dead “as he tried to escape”
— Vidya (@journovidya) July 10, 2020
Opposition parties criticise the government
Opposition parties have criticised the encounter, saying the gangster was killed to protect politicians with whom he had collaborated. Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav said that the toppling of the government was prevented by silence Dubey and the ‘secrets’ he held.
दरअसल ये कार नहीं पलटी है, राज़ खुलने से सरकार पलटने से बचाई गयी है.
— Akhilesh Yadav (@yadavakhilesh) July 10, 2020
Priyanka Gandhi, the Congress in-charge for UP, said the ‘criminal has been killed’ but those who protected him are still safe.
अपराधी का अंत हो गया, अपराध और उसको सरंक्षण देने वाले लोगों का क्या?
— Priyanka Gandhi Vadra (@priyankagandhi) July 10, 2020
Gangster’s son, wife arrested
Hours after the gangster’s arrest in Ujjain, Dubey’s wife, son and a staffer were also apprehended by the Uttar Pradesh STF in Lucknow on Thursday evening. Richa Dubey was arrested from her Krishna Nagar residence on Thursday evening by a team of the Special Task Force (STF) on charges of harbouring the gangster and conniving with him.
“Vikas Dubey’s wife is being questioned to elicit information about the facts relating to the events involving ambush of the police team in Kanpur, a police spokesman said.
She is allegedly part of the conspiracy that led to the killing of eight policemen at Bikru village.