A Ballia court on Wednesday remanded BJP leader Dhirendra Pratap Singh, arrested for allegedly shooting dead a man in Durjanpur village of the district during the allotment of a ration shop, in police custody for two days. Chief Judicial Magistrate Ramesh Kushwaha remanded Singh in police custody to enable the police recover the murder weapon, a country-made pistol, from the accused and for his custodial interrogation as part of the ongoing probe into the case.
CJM Kushwaha handed over the BJP leader's custody to police taking note of his confession that he had shot dead Jaiprakash Pal in the presence of civil and police officials during the allotment process of a subsidised ration shop in Durjanpur village under Reoti police station area. The court, however, remanded Singh in police custody for only two days, rejecting the prosecution demand for seven-day custody.
The court remands the accused in police custody from 10 am on Thursday till 10 am Saturday, said the court. Singh is presently lodged in Ballia jail under judicial custody following his arrest by Lucknow STF on Sunday.
While remanding Singh to police custody, the court rejected the defence counsel Harivansh Singh's argument that his client had not made any confession to the police and the police is seeking his custody to further implicate him in the case. But the court rejected the argument saying that as per judicial precedents, the police cannot be denied the custody of the accused on the basis of his claims in the court.
Citing from the police remand application, filed by Reoti SHO Praveen Kumar Singh, the court said that the accused had told the police that he had concealed the murder weapon at such a place that he alone could get it recovered. The accused is also needed to be interrogated by the police to find out who gave shelter to Singh when he fled after committing the crime.
While allowing Singh's police custody, the court ordered police to get the accused medically examined before taking him into its custody from Ballia district jail. The court also warned police against meting out any inhuman treatment to Singh and allowed him to have his counsel accompany him to watch the police proceeding from a distance.
The Ballia police, meanwhile, on Wednesday, arrested a close relative Dharmendra Singh of BJP leader Singh for his alleged involvement in the crime. Reoti SHO Praveen Singh said Dharmendra Singh is not a named accused in the FIR but he is suspected to be involved in the crime.
The SHO said the FIR in the murder case was lodged against seven to eight named accused and 20 to 25 unknown persons.