MEERUT, 11 June-2014, Sandeep Rai/TNN: Just two days after a BJP leader was shot dead in Greater Noida, another leader of the party, Om Veer, was on Tuesday killed by two motorcycle borne assailants in the Meerapur locality of Muzaffarnagar.
Om Veer, said sources, was fired at from close range while he was out taking his morning walk near the jungles of Bhuma. The 40-year-old vice-convener of the BJP’s Panchayati Raj Cell in Muzaffarnagar, an ex-serviceman, took seven bullets that killed him on the spot. Reports coming late in the evening, however, said Om Veer had returned fire from his licensed pistol and injured one of his attackers.
In a region where peace has at best been tentative after the Muzaffarnagar riots of September last year, many say this doesn’t bode too well for an already restive western UP. As recently as on May 10, two groups in Meerut city belonging to different communities shot at each other over the issue of sharing water from a well.
Talking about the murder of Om Veer, Laxmikant Bajpai, the BJP’s state president, said, “I have heard about the tragic incident and will be going to Muzaffarnagar tomorrow. Only after that will we decide what course of action needs to be taken in the matter.”
On their part, the police have registered a case of murder against the two unknown killers. Kamal Singh, SHO at the Meerapur police station, said, “There seems to have been a dispute over money. The deceased is said to owe a lot of money to various people.” The police had initially maintained Om Veer was not a BJP worker.
Alok Sisodia, media coordinator of BJP for UP West, said his party was taking stock of the situation and would “look for the reasons behind the killing”.
Taking a more strident line, Satyapal Singh Pal, the BJP’s Muzaffarnagar district president, said the administration has been given 24 hours to nab the culprits. “After that we will begin our protests. Things can’t go on like this.”