Constable appointed for BJP leader's protection critically injured his driver when he decided to teach him how to pull the trigger after consuming alcohol
An offhand lesson in shooting a gun imparted by a drunk bodyguard of a BJP leader to his driver, with a bit of a drama thrown in, ended on a macabre note, when the bullet hit the driver's neck.
The first shot Vanjari fired from his service revolver was blank, but a bullet hit Mudaliyar the second time
On Thursday, Constable Chandrakant Vanjari (25) deputed to protect Ulhasnagar-based politician Prakash Makheja, a former standing committee member, decided to instruct the driver, Ganesh Mudaliyar (27), on how to pull the trigger.
But Vanjari's bullet brushed Mudaliyar's neck, leaving him severely injured. Currently, Mudaliyar is fighting for life at Fortis hospital in Kalyan.
"Both were drunk at the time of the incident. We have registered a case of attempt to murder against the accused (Vanjari) and are investigating the incident," Senior Inspector Siddharth Wagh of Ulhasnagar police station said.
In November last year, an anonymous caller issued life threats to Makheja on several occasions. A bigshot in a political party, Makheja approached the police for protection and, on December 12, Constable Vanjari, attached to the Thane police for the last three years, was appointed as his bodyguard.
Vanjari fast became friends with Makheja's driver Mudaliyar. The two would often have lunch together. They lived in the same house in Camp No 2, Ulhasnagar, next to Makheja's bungalow.
On the night of January 12, the two had dinner and alcohol together on the terrace of the house. Around 1.30 am, a sloshed Vanjari got his service revolver out and showed it to Mudaliyar, who was equally drunk.
According to his statement to the police, Vanjare told Mudaliyar on the terrace, "Goli kaise marte hai tujhe pata hai kya? (Do you know how to shoot?)"
When Mudaliyar said no, Vanjari told him he would teach him how. He aimed at Mudaliyar at point-blank range, and pulled the trigger. But there was no bullet in the revolver's chamber. Vanjari raised the revolver again.
This time, he said, he would definitely fire a good shot. He pointed it at Mudliyar, cocked the trigger, and fired.
This time, the chamber wasn't empty, and a bullet grazed Mudaliyar's neck.
Vanjari was drunk; he missed his target, the police said later. Within seconds, the driver collapsed to the ground in a pool of blood.
The sound of the firearm evoked the suspicion of neighbours and they informed the police. A patrolling team reached the spot and nabbed Vanjari. Mudaliyar was rushed to a hospital, but since his condition was critical, he was shifted to Fortis hospital in Kalyan. He is still battling for life.
The police said as the accused was drunk he missed the target. If he had shot an inch on the other side, Mudaliyar would have died on the spot.
Senior Inspector Wagh added, "We have arrested the accused under Section 307 (attempt to murder). He was produced in the court, where he was remanded to police custody for three day." The police are investigating the incident.