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Man’s shot at saving self and pals backfires

Updated on: 29 July,2023 07:32 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Anurag Kamble |

He cooked up a story of being attacked after friend had accidentally fired at him in Telangana; to avoid cops, companions brought him to Ulhasnagar

Man’s shot at saving self and pals backfires

Sunil Prajapati, the injured man

In an attempt to avoid the police after his friend accidentally shot him, a 24-year-old Ulhasnagar resident cooked up a nearly perfect story of getting attacked while attempting to break up a fight. The Badlapur police, however, saw through the ruse and found that the youth, Sunil Prajapati, was accidentally fired at by his friend, over 700 kilometres away in Telangana, and to save themselves, they brought him back to Ulhasnagar and got him admitted to a hospital there. The cops have arrested two of the persons who were with him, and recovered three pistols and 21 live bullets from them.  

On the evening of July 22, doctors at Central Hospital, Ulhasnagar informed the Badlapur cops that a 24-year-old youngster, shot by an unknown person in Badlapur near the Panvel Highway, was brought there. He was given primary treatment and transferred to Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Hospital, Kalwa for further treatment. The Badlapur cops met the injured man.

The story

Prajapati told the police, “On the evening of July 21, I was drinking alone at the hilly area at Badlapur East. Two men were also drinking nearby. Around 10 pm, they began fighting and I tried to intervene. One person took out a revolver and fired at me. The bullet hit my right shoulder. People nearby tried to help me but the shooter threatened to shoot them too. I lost consciousness."

DCP Sudhakar Pathare and Anil Padwal, senior inspector of Badlapur police station with the team that detected the truthDCP Sudhakar Pathare and Anil Padwal, senior inspector of Badlapur police station with the team that detected the truth

“I regained consciousness the next day around 2 pm and came to Ulhasnagar somehow.  Somebody had informed my brother Anil and he, accompanied by my friends, Aditya Jaiswal and Nilesh Yadav, admitted me to Central Hospital,” Prajapati added. Based on his statement, an offence was registered against an unknown person under the Arms Act.

Police investigate

DCP Sudhakar Pathare ordered Anil Padwal, senior inspector of Badlapur police station to form dedicated teams to track the shooter. “Since the injured person was further shifted to KEM Hospital for treatment, there was no one to show us the exact spot where the crime took place. Also, three different teams were formed to detect the accused,” said a police officer.

During the probe, the police found discrepancies in the statements of Prajapati, his brother and his friends about the flow of events. Technical analysis provided more clues and the cops suspected something fishy. CCTV footage and interrogations of several persons near the place of the incident revealed that nothing of that sort had happened. The police met a witness, Jahir Nazir Ansari, who confessed that he, Prajapati and his friends Rehan Khan and Ram Ashish Patel, were not in Badlapur on the day of the incident but at Narayan Peth, Telangana. While having drinks in the hilly area around 7 pm, he said Patel, who was handling a pistol, mistakenly fired it and a bullet hit Prajapti’s right shoulder. Fearing a police case in Telangana, the four of them decided to come back to Ulhasnagar.

“They took a train and reached Kalyan July 22 afternoon and immediately informed Anil and narrated the story they had cooked up. They destroyed Prajapati's blood-soaked shirt during the journey and later even his pants though we had told them to preserve it while he was in the Kalwa hospital," said SI Padwal.

The police nabbed Khan, 36, and Patel, 32, on July 25 and 26 respectively. Prajapati has been booked in cases at Ulhasnagar. He stepped out on bail seven months ago.

No. of live bullets recovered from accused

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