LUCKNOW: The Station House officer (SHO) of Mauranipur police station in Jhansi was suspended on Saturday by SSP Jhansi after an audio clip went viral in which he is heard allegedly striking a deal with a proclaimed history sheeter, a former block pramukh of Mauranipur. The SHO is heard sharing with criminal clues of expected police action against him.
Within hours of clip going viral on social media, SSP Jhansi, Vinod Kumar Singh suspended SHO Sunit Kumar Singh and ordered a probe against him. He also ordered an inquiry to check the authenticity of the audio clip.
In the lengthy conversation allegedly between history sheeter Lekhraj Singh Yadav and SHO, latter can be heard asking Lekhraj to be prepared for police action any time as he is the most suitable case for the encounter in UP with over 60 criminal cases, including dacoity, murder and abduction pending against him. As per the local sources, Lekhraj along with his men had fired on a police party on Jhansi outskirts near MP border on Friday evening.
SHO Singh is also heard suggesting Lekhraj to manage some of the local BJP leaders, including Babina MLA to escape police action. “I will advise you to manage Sanjay Dubey (BJP District President) and Rajiv Singh Paricha (Babina MLA) to get some relief. Or else anything can happen,” the SHO is heard telling the criminal.
The undated audio clip is being said to be a few days old when Lekhraj had called up the SHO seeking his help after getting a hint of police action. But in the clip, the SHO is heard telling the criminal how strict the present dispensation is unlike previous SP and BSP regimes. He is heard suggesting Lekhraj to come into the system which means to surrender or else face encounter.
On the other, when a police team led by the same SHO had laid a trap to catch Lekhraj at one of his hideouts in village Harkaranpura in Mauranipur on Friday, Lekhraj and his associates had opened fire on the police party. The crossfire lasted for half an hour after which the accused was able to escape in his SUV.
The SHO sustained minor injuries. Later, an FIR was lodged against Lekhraj and two of his sons under Section 307 of IPC.
“I have suspended the SHO and have instituted an enquiry against him after the audio clip surfaced,” said Jhansi SSP Vinod Kumar Singh who added that on the basis of the probe report further action would be initiated.
On the other hand, Babina MLA, Rajiv Singh Paricha, whose name was taken by the SHO in the audio clip, said: “It seems that the SHO is trying to strike a deal with the criminal and to add weight to his claim he is taking our names.” If the contents of the audio were genuine, SHO’s loyalty towards the police department was questionable, said the BJP MLA.