Kasauli firing: Day after killing officer leading demolition drive, accused still at large

Vijay Thakur, accused of fatally shooting an official, continues to at large even as police launched a manhunt and declared a reward of Rs 1 lakh on information leading to his arrest.

Published: 02nd May 2018 07:13 PM  |   Last Updated: 02nd May 2018 07:14 PM   |  A+A-

Shailbala Sharma who had gone to seal unauthorised constructions in Narayani guest house was shot by its owner (Photo | Express Photo Service)

By PTI

SHIMLA/SOLAN: A day after he allegedly shot dead Assistant Town and Country Planning officer Shail Bala, when she was leading a demolition drive against illegal structures, the accused Vijay Thakur continued to at large even as police launched a manhunt and declared a reward of Rs 1 lakh on information leading to his arrest.

Initial probe revealed that Vijay Thakur was a state electricity board employee, a police official told PTI adding the hotel in whose management he may have been involved was registered in the name of one of his family members.

The police today also released a photograph of the accused and announced a Rs 1 lakh reward for credible clues about his whereabouts, officials said.

Intensified combing operations were on in the forest area where Vijay Thakur is learnt to have fled, they added.

A hotel owner who had spoken to the accused few minutes before the shooting incident had been detained, a source said.

The body of Shail Bala was handed over to family members after post-mortem and forensic examination.

She was created at her native village in Ghumarwin in Bilaspur district, officials said.

Meanwhile, an enquiry into the incident, to be conducted by Divisional Commissioner, Shimla, was ordered, officials said.

The enquiry report will be submitted within 15 days, they added.

SP, Solan, has also held a preliminary enquiry into alleged lapses, they added.

Meanwhile, demolition operations which were suspended yesterday after the shooting resumed today under heavy police protection with senior police officers camping in Kasauli.

Prohibitory orders under section 144 of CrPC were in place in the surrounding areas of Narayani Guest house where the shooting incident took place.

Additional forces were rushed to all demolition sites to ensure no violence erupted.

Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur expressed shock and grief over the killing of Shail Bala and warned that  such incidents would not be tolerated and culprit would be nabbed soon and action would be taken as per the law.

He said law and order would be maintained in the state at all cost and the orders of the Supreme Court would be followed in the letter and spirit.

Yesterday, Assistant Town and Country Planner Shail Bala was killed on the spot while a PWD employee Gulab Singh was severely injured when Vijay Thakur allegedly opened fire on the demolition team, police said.

The Supreme Court had on April 17 directed the state government to demolish unauthorised structures in 13 hotels in Kasauli and Dharampur areas of Solan, and four teams were constituted for this purpose.

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