New Delhi: Investigators working on the Delhi farmhouse shootout that left liquor and real estate baron Ponty Chadha and his brother Hardeep dead claimed to have figured out the sequence of events leading to the sensational killings.
The Delhi police said Saturday’s encounter between the two brothers was sparked off by Chadha’s alleged attempt to lock up the Chattarpur farmhouse that he and Hardeep had a dispute over.
Police said Ponty, whose real name is Gurdeep, visited the farmhouse around 10.30 am with his friend Sukhdev Singh, who heads the Uttarakhand Minorities Commission.
Chadha (55), allegedly asked his men to dab black paint over the farmhouse board carrying Hardeep’s name. An enraged Hardeep, investigators said, got a wind of this and rushed to the farmhouse from Noida around noon.
Police said Hardeep first ran into Chadha’s aide Narender at the farmhouse gates and shot him. He then fired several shots at Chadha and his SUV, using his licenced 9-mm pistol.
Hardeep, who allegedly continued firing, was shot by Singh’s personal security officer Sachin Tyagi from the Uttarakhand police. Tyagi has been detained.
The police have registered a case of double murder in the Chadha killings and another of an attempt to murder Sukhdev. A third case of trespassing and kidnapping has been registered on the complaint of Hardeep’s manager.
The shootout happened on Saturday around 1 pm. Chadha suffered 12 bullet wounds and Hardeep four. Narender was seriously injured and underwent surgery in hospital.
Fifteen people are being questioned in the case and call records of Chadha being checked. This was the second incident of firing at Chadha’s residence. On October 5, gunshots were reported from his house in Uttar Pradesh’s Moradabad district.
The three Chadha brothers — Ponty, Hardeep and Rajinder —were jointly managing the estimated Rs 8,000-crore Wave Inc, formerly the Chadha Group, that has diverse business interests in fields ranging from distilleries, multiplexes, sugar to paper mills.
Chadha was thought to have been close to several prominent politicians. He hit the headlines in February this year when income tax officials conducted searches at his premises in Delhi, Noida, Moradabad and Lucknow.
Rags to riches
From selling snacks by the roadside to owning a business empire worth around Rs 8,000 crore, Ponty Chadha’s was a real rags-to-riches story.
Gurdeep Singh Chadha alias Ponty Chadha, who was born in Moradabad, used to sell snacks with his father in near a liquor shop as a boy. Using his political clout, he soon ruled over the liquor business in UP and his corporate interests also spanned across real estate, sugar, film production and exhibition. In September this year, his Wave Group bought the Delhi franchise of Hockey India League that is set to make its debut next year.