Gangster Munna Bajrangi, who was imprisoned for killing a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA, was shot dead inside the jail premises in Uttar Pradesh on Monday, reports said. The shocking incident took place at around 6.30 am at the District Jail in Baghpat where Bajrangi was lodged for allegedly murdering BJP MLA Krishnanand Rai in 2005.
A judicial inquiry into the incident has been ordered into the incident and the jailor has also been suspended, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath said. “Such an incident occurring inside jail premises is a serious matter. Will conduct an in-depth investigation and strict action to be taken against those responsible,” the CM added. Investigation team has arrived at Baghpat district Jail.
Parkash Singh, former UP DGP, told FinancialExpress.com that the government must set up an inquiry to ascertain if the jail authorities are complicit in the case. “An inquiry must be set up by the UP government in the matter. Whoever is found guilty must be dealt with sternly and given the harshest punishment as per law,” Singh, who also served as the chief of the Border Security Force said.
Singh further asserted that it would be wrong to jump the gun and blame the state police for the incident as jail security generally does not fall under the purview of the police department. “I am not aware of a police personnel being deputed at the Baghpat jail but it has not been under the purview of the police department in UP.”
He, however, called for urgent reforms in the manner in which jail security is dealt with.
“Time and again, we hear of some or the other illicit activity inside jail – be it the presence of drugs, weapons or mobile phones. However, only when an incident such as this comes is when we wake up and start talking about the deficiencies in the system. There is a need for reforms urgently to address the several issues that going on inside our jails,” said Singh, who served as DGP of UP from 1991 to 1993.
Bajrangi, who was lodged in Jhansi jail since his arrest from Mumbai in 2009, was brought to Baghpat district jail for appearing in an extortion case. He was accused in more than 40 murder and extortion cases and once carried a reward of 7 lakh on his head. Meanwhile, Bajrangi’s advocate V Srivastava said the gangster was brought to District Jail in Baghpat from Jhansi last night. “At 6;30am today,a convict lodged in the jail shot him dead&hid the pistol in a gutter. Few days ago, we had made UP CM aware of threat to gangster Munna Bajrangi’s life”,” the lawyer alleged.
The incident comes just days after Bajrangi’s wife had claimed of a threat to his husband’s life and accused the Yogi Adityanath government.
#WATCH Seema Singh, wife of Gangster Munna Bajrangi, says, “I want to tell UP CM Adityanath ji that my husband’s life is in danger. A conspiracy is being hatched to kill him in a fake encounter.” (29.06.18) pic.twitter.com/o2uCuePKJe
— ANI UP (@ANINewsUP) July 9, 2018
Bajrangi, who was on the Police’s most wanted list in the past, has reportedly kept changing his allegiance to political parties. However, his rise as a dreaded gangster was curtailed in the aftermath of the shocking murder of the BJP MLA.
Here are key facts about Munna Bajrangi:
* Munna Bajrangi’s original name is Prem Prakash Singh. He is survived by his wife and three children.
* In early 2000s, Bajrangi supported the Samajwadi Party but later turned to Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP).
* MLA Krishnanand Rai was killed in 2005. Bajrangi served jail terms since 2009. Earlier he was lodged in Tihar Jail.
* In 2012 Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, he fought from jail as the joint candidate of the Apna Dal and the Peace Party. However, he lost to Samajwadi Party’s Shraddha Yadav and came in a distant third position.
* Last year, Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government had ordered the transfer of 48 criminals from their current jails to other prisons across the state. Bajrangi, along with gangster-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari, was one of them. Munna Bajrangi was then transferred to Pilibhit jail.
Since coming to power, CM Adityanath has taken measures to keep a strict vigil on jailed criminals. A special task force was set up to keep a check on the activities of the criminals. In addition, jammers were also installed in jails. The government also passed a directive stating that a strict check has to be kept on the criminals, making sure that they don’t carry any mobile phones with them.