Police have come across what they claim is a plan to kill actor Salman Khan, with the arrest of a sharpshooter from the Lawrence Bishnoi gang, who was allegedly involved in the murder of a resident from Haryana’s Faridabad in June.
According to a report in The Indian Express, the police said the sharpshooter had already conducted a recce in Mumbai on Bishnoi’s directions earlier this year.
Bishnoi is currently lodged in a prison in Rajasthan.
According to police, the accused Rahul/Sanga/Baba/Sunni (27), was arrested from Uttarakhand on August 15 on suspicion of murdering Praveen, a Faridabad resident who ran a ration depot, on June 24.
“During questioning, it has emerged that Rahul had travelled to Mumbai in January to conduct a recce for the murder of Salman Khan. He went to the actor’s house in Bandra for the purpose and stayed in the area for two days,” said Rajesh Duggal, DCP (Headquarters).
“He conducted this recce at the behest of Bishnoi and Sampat Nehra, another member of the gang, who had also conducted a recce to plan for the same crime before he was arrested in June 2018,” he said.
Nehra had been arrested from Hyderabad for allegedly plotting Khan’s murder, also at the behest of Bishnoi.
Lawrence Bishnoi is a member of the Bishnoi community, which reveres black bucks. According to police, the fact that Khan had in 1998 killed two black bucks in Jodhpur led to Bishnoi holding a grudge against him.
“Rahul conducted the recce on the directions of Bishnoi and later apprised him of the findings. However, they were unable to take their plan to the next stage because of the coronavirus outbreak,” said the DCP.
Unlike Nehra, who police say was Bishnoi’s “right hand man”, Rahul was a relatively newer member of the gang.
“Between 2016 and 2018, he was working at the ESIC Hospital in Faridabad on a temporary basis. In 2018, he was arrested by the Crime Branch Badkhal for possession of an illegal weapon. After being released on bail, he joined the Bishnoi gang in August 2019,” said DCP Duggal.
The murder, for which Faridabad Police had arrested Rahul, took place on June 24. With the help of some accomplices, he had shot Praveen, whom he suspected had provided police with a tip-off that led to his arrest in 2018. “He would commit different crimes with different accomplices on the directions of Lawrence Bishnoi. In the last six months alone, he committed four murders,” said DCP Duggal.
Police said Rahul was also involved in two cases of car snatching in November 2019, and the same year, he was also involved in enabling the release of two prisoners from police custody. In January this year, Rahul had also conducted the recce for a murder in Rajasthan, police said.
“He has been produced in court and remanded in police custody for further questioning,” said Sube Singh, PRO of Faridabad Police on Tuesday evening.