Fired minorities official in glare over farmhouse shootout

November 23, 2012 - 6:57:27 am

New Delhi: Sacked Uttarakhand Minorities Commission chief Sukhdev Singh Namdhari’s role is under the scanner over the gun battle at a farmhouse here leading to the death of businessman Ponty Chadha and his brother Hardeep, police said yesterday.

As Namdhari’s men reportedly helped the Chadha aides in taking control of the Chhattarpur farmhouse No.42 in south Delhi before the shootout, his role of trespassing was under investigation, an official said. Ponty and Hardeep, the brothers who had dispute over properties, were killed on the afternoon of November 17.

Namdhari was present at the spot with his men along with Ponty’s aides when the incident took place.

“Some people have given us statements that Namdhari’s men were also part of the group that trespassed into the Chhattarpur farmhouse. We are verifying that,” said Joint Commissioner of Police Vivek Gogia.

Namdhari is missing after being questioned at Mehrauli police station, where he went the day after the shootout to lodge a complaint against Hardeep. Police suspect that he might be withholding facts about the drama.

Gogia did not give a direct reply when asked about reports that Namdhari was absconding.

“We would like to talk to him. He is not with us. Whenever there is a need, we will talk to him,” Gogia said.

Gogia also did not clarify about Namdhari’s last communication with the police. He only said that police were in touch with him.

He said that Namdhari’s role behind the shootout could not be ruled out.

Namdhari’s role is under suspicion but police don’t have enough evidence to book him for trespass as of now, he said.

“Namdhari had gone to meet Ponty and was present at the time of the incident. But it is a matter of investigation whether he was involved in trespassing. We have to corroborate this. We don’t have evidence against him so far,” Gogia said.

The official also refused to answer whether the statements of Narender, Ponty’s manager who was injured in the shootout, matched with the versions given by Namdhari and others.

Mystery still remains over the number of bullets shot and guns used in the firing at the Chhattarpur farmhouse as police await the ballistic report.