The UP Police has suspended from service the Station Officer of Chaubeypur police station in Kanpur district in view of allegations of his involvement in the killing of eight policemen by criminals during a raid to arrest history-sheeter Vikas Dubey.
"In view of the allegations levelled against SO, he has been suspended and all the allegations are being thoroughly looked into," IG Kanpur Range Mohit Agarwal told reporters in Kanpur.
"If his involvement or that of any other personnel of the police is found in this incident, then they will be sacked from the department and also sent to jail," he said.
The officer, however, did not disclose the nature of allegations against Vinay Tiwari, the SO of Chaubeypur police station. Eight police personnel, including a DSP, were gunned down in a village near Kanpur city by the henchmen of a criminal who lost two of them in a firefight later, officials said.
The policemen who attained martyrdom are -- Deputy SP Devendra Mishra (54) who was posted as Circle Officer of Bilhaur, SHO Shivrajpur police station Mahesh Kumar Yadav (42), Sub-Inspector Anoop Kumar Singh (32), Sub-Inspector Nebu Lal (48), constables Jitendra Pal (26), Sultan Singh (34), Bablu Kumar (23) and Rahul Kumar (24).
Seven others, including a civilian, were injured in the attack from a rooftop on a police team after it entered Bikru village past Thursday midnight to arrest Dubey, who has faced 60 criminal cases.
The attackers fled, snatching weapons from the dead and the wounded policemen. Agarwal, when asked to comment on how many persons have been detained and which other states the police was focussing on in the hunt for Dubey, refused to answer, saying "operational and strategic things are not revealed by the police."
When asked about the demolition of Dubey's house, the officer said, "Most of the villagers have said that he (Dubey) had grabbed people's land using muscle power and built his house. He used to extort money from people. It was a hub of crime. There was anger among the local people and there was a feeling of vengeance among them."
The Kanpur Range IG went on to say that family members of the criminal could have been attacked by the local people but the situation did not go out of control due to police presence.
Earlier during the day Agarwal told PTI, "To nab Vikas Dubey and his accomplices, as many as 25 teams have been formed which are conducting raids in different districts of the state and other states as well."
Police officials also said a surveillance team was scanning over 500 mobile phones and efforts were on to retrieve information pertaining to Dubey. The Special Task Force of UP Police has also been roped in.
Agarwal also said that a cash reward of Rs 50,000 has been announced for providing information about Dubey and the identity of the information provider will be kept secret. He also said that seven policemen, who were injured in the encounter, were admitted to a private hospital where their condition was stable.
Police, late on Friday night, had raided Dubey's house in Krishnanagar area of Lucknow. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath rushed to Kanpur on Friday to meet the family members of the slain policemen and announced financial assistance of Rs one crore each to the bereaved families.
Promising that those behind the heinous crime will not be let off, the chief minister said a government job would be given to a member of each of the bereaved families, besides extraordinary pension.
Stressing that the government was with the families, Adityanath said it would work to ensure that justice was done and those behind the crime were punished as per the law.
"Some of the weapons which the miscreants had fled with have been recovered. None of those responsible for this heinous act will be let off and the sacrifice of the slain policemen will not be allowed to go in vain. The brave jawans were killed while they had gone for carrying out a raid as part of their duty," he said.