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Raza Academy's Bhiwandi chief arrested for murder of cops

Raza Academy's Bhiwandi chief arrested for murder of cops

Author: Express News Service
Publication: The Indian Express
Date: January 6, 2007
URL: http://cities.expressindia.com/archivefullstory.php?newsid=216344&creation_date=2007-01-06

Yusuf Raza, president of the Bhiwandi unit of Raza Academy and one of the accused in the lynching of two policemen that followed police firing to quell rioting over the construction of a police station in the Mumbai suburb, has been arrested and sent to judicial custody till January 10.

Raza was arrested yesterday, six months after the incidents. The police filed a chargesheet in October against 39 people for the murders on July 6 and 150 others for rioting the day before.

In its remand application in the court soon after the first arrests, the police had said that Yusuf Raza was absconding. But residents said he has been in Bhiwandi all this time, barring a few days immediately after the incidents.

"We arrested him yesterday from his residence and have handed him to the Crime Branch as they are investigating the case," said Deputy Commissioner of Police (Bhiwandi) Ravindra Sengaonkar. "Arresting any of the accused at any point of time is the prerogative of the investigating officer."

The police are now looking for Shakil-secretary of the Raza Academy, Bhiwandi-and Sharjil, one of the main accused in the case.

On July 5, the police had lathi-charged an angry mob in Bhiwandi that was protesting against the police's move to construct a police station on a disputed site next to a burial ground and mosque. Organisations like the Raza Academy and Bhiwandi Action Committee Group (BACG) had told the people that the police station was being built on the mosque's land.

When the protestors starting pelting stones and went out of control, the police opened fire. Two people were killed.

Later in the night, an angry mob while protesting the police's action attacked two constables patrolling the area, and stoned and stabbed them to death. They then threw their bodies inside burning state transport buses.

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