by Ashis Sinha
Hours after the murders of gangster-tuned politician Atiqe Ahmed and his brother Ashraf, the government of Uttar Pradesh implemented section 144 in the cities of Lucknow and Prayagraj and 73 other districts across the state. The decision was made to keep the state’s law and order situation under control and prevent more unrest; statewide, police are on high alert.
Yesterday in Prayagraj, unidentified assailants killed Atiqe and his brother Ashraf from point-blank range when media persons were talking to him. The postmortems were done today, and will be buried in Prayagraj this afternoon, sources said.
They were shot dead near the Medical College when the police is taking them to have medical examinations. After the murder, all three shooters surrendered before the police.
A Turkey-made semi-automatic pistol was allegedly used by the assailants to gun down them. The source of the weapons is being traced, police said.
Atiqe Ahmed has a criminal history dating back to 1979 and Ashraf had more than 100 and 57 FIRs respectively against their name, a police official informed.
After the murder of Atiqe and Ashraf the last evening, the Chief Minister of the State, Yogi Adityanath, is receiving frequent information on the current state of law and order throughout the State. Senior personnel of the police force and administrative officers in each of the districts have been given orders to do whatever it takes to keep the peace and keep the law and order situation stable in their respective areas.
CM appealed to people not to pay any attention to rumours. Strict action will be taken against those who spread rumours, said CM.
Police are keeping extra vigil in the sensitive areas of the State and intense checking of vehicles is going on. The heavy police force has been deployed in the Chakia, Beniganj, and Dhumnganj areas of Prayagraj along with the other areas where Atiq Ahmed had its support base. Internet services in the Prayagraj district have been suspended.
On Tuesday, the Uttar Pradesh STF killed Asad Ahmad, the son of Atique Ahmad, and Ghulam— an accomplice, wanted in the Umesh Pal murder case, in an encounter near Jhansi.