Munna Bajrangi’s murder in jail raises questions on law and order in UP

Munna Bajrangi’s wife Seema Singh had on June 29 accused two police inspectors of STF and some influential UP leaders of conspiring to kill her mafia don husband. But it appears nobody paid attention

Photo courtesy: Social media
Photo courtesy: Social media

Aas Mohd Kaif

Munna Bajrangi’s wife Seema Singh had held a press conference on June 29 in Lucknow in which she had accused two police inspectors of the state’s Special Task Force (STF) and some influential leaders of Uttar Pradesh of conspiring to kill her jailed mafia don husband. Her voice raised during the press conference, which was held in the capital of the state, does not seem to have reached the keepers of law and order, as Munna Bajrangi was eventually killed within Baghpat District Jail in a sensational manner on July 9.

Munna Bajrangi’s brother-in-law Vikas Shrivastava alleges he has been murdered as a result of the conspiracy hatched by some high profile people. Questions are being raised about how the murder was possible, without the government’s assistance, for an inmate to possess a state-of-the-art weapon inside a jail and shoot at someone 10 times. This single murder may cause a major shake up in Uttar Pradesh and a bloody gang war may erupt. Munna was considered Mukhtar Ansari’s right hand man.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has ordered an investigation into the murder and four officials of the Baghpat jail, including the jailer, have been suspended.

Munna’s wife Seema Singh has claimed that she has a CCTV recording and no security measures were taken despite her handing over significant information on a conspiracy to murder her husband to the administration. Munna was scheduled to be taken to court to be present for the hearing of a case. He was brought to Baghpat jail from Jhansi jail only on Sunday night. Sunil Rathi, a notorious gangster who was already imprisoned here, allegedly killed Munna by showering him with bullets.

Sunil Rathi too was shifted to Baghpat jail just a few days ago. Journalist Rashid Ali Khoji, an expert on criminal matters, says that this murder is a blatant example of the inefficiency of the system and raises some serious questions, including the following.

  • How could a loaded weapon reach within the premises of a jail?
  • How did Sunil Rathi and Munna end up being in the same barrack?
  • Why wasn’t Seema Singh’s concern paid attention to?
  • Why wasn’t Munna Bajrangi taken to Meerut jail?
  • How did Sunil Rathi arrive in Baghpat jail from Roorkee?
Earlier, a gangster from Muzaffarnagar Vicky Tyagi was shot dead within the premises of a court. The question of security too arises. This incident has brought the law and order situation of the entire state under scrutiny

A mafia don hailing from Eastern Uttar Pradesh, Munna Bajrangi was once very fond of bearing arms. He wanted to be a big gangster, of the kind that Bollywood masala films have made infamous. That is perhaps why a case was registered against him by the state police when he was just 17-years-old. A case was lodged against him in Surehi police station of Jaunpur for assault and illegal possession of arms. From there, he began his journey into the world of crime. During this time, he got the protection of Gajraj Singh, who was a local mafia goon of Jaunpur. In 1984, during a robbery, Munna allegedly killed a businessman. After that he allegedly killed Jaunpur BJP leader Ramchandra Singh on Gajraj’s instructions. Thus, he created a terror in that area. One by one, he killed many people. He joined the gang of Bahubali Mukhtar Ansari in the 1990s to strengthen his influence in the eastern region of UP. This gang was operating from Mau, but its effect was apparent in the entire Purvanchal region.

Mukhtar Ansari shifted from the world of crime to the world of politics and was elected as an MLA from Mau on the Samajwadi Party ticket. His gang became very powerful after this. He was constantly working under Mukhtar Ansari’s instructions. Sources say that on the instruction of the Bhai, Munna Bajrangi allegedly conspired to kill BJP MLA Krishnanand Rai. Subsequently Krishnanand Rai was killed in broad daylight on November 29, 2005. Munna Bajrangi along with his teammates, shot 400 bullets from his AK47 on two cars of Krishnanand Rai on the Lucknow highway.

In this shootout, six more persons along with Krishnanand Rai were killed. The post mortem report of the deceased showed 60 to 100 bullets in each body. This massacre created a stir in political circles in Uttar Pradesh. Munna Bajrangi’s name became synonymous with terror and fear. After this scandalous murder, Munna topped the list of UP Police’s most wanted persons.

According to sources, Munna was haunted by a fear of police encounter. That is why, he himself had planned his arrest by the Delhi police. The Mumbai police was also a part of the operation to arrest him

He was wanted by the UP police, State Task Force and Central Bureau of Investigation in other cases too. A bounty of ₹7 lakh was declared as a reward for information leading to his arrest. Many cases of murder, kidnapping and extortion were filed against him. Munna kept changing his location constantly. His influence was increasing in the Uttarakhand region. Gangster Sunil Rathi was also active in this area. Cases were filed against him in many other states too. He often proved to be a headache for the police. Most of the cases against him were filed in Uttar Pradesh. On October 29, 2009, the Delhi Police finally arrested him in Mumbai in a dramatic manner.

According to sources, Munna was haunted by a fear of police encounter. That is why, he himself had planned his arrest by the Delhi Police. The Mumbai Police was also a part of the operation to arrest him. Later Delhi Police claimed that Munna Bajrangi was involved in the murder of the controversial encounter specialist Rajbir Singh. Therefore, he has been arrested and has been constantly shifted from one jail to another. During his stay in jail, many cases of extortion by him also came to light.

According to the latest information, he was trying to increase his influence in Uttarakhand and had recently taken a parking contract in Haridwar. This had triggered a conflict between him and the local gangsters.

This single murder can trigger a terrible gang war in the world of crime of Uttar Pradesh.

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