A motorcycle-borne youth, suspected to be an activist of banned outfit Students Islamic Movement of India, shot dead three persons in broad daylight on Saturday in Khandwa in Madhya Pradesh.
The incident in the communally-sensitive town occurred today afternoon, when an unidentified motorcycle-borne youth first shot at Anti-Terrorism Squad constable Sitaram Batham, 32, in the Teen Pulia area, said City Superintendent of Police S K Nashine.
Batham was shot in the chest, following which he suffered critical injuries and later died in the hospital, the CSP said. The assailant then possibly left his motorcycle there and ran towards Ganeshtalai area, where he shot dead an advocate standing in front of his house, Nashine said. The youth then crossed the railway track to reach Anand Naga, snatched the motorcycle of bank official Ravishankar Pare, and shot him.
The suspected SIMI activist then ran towards Sinhada and disappeared. While Pal and Pare died on the spot, Batham succumbed to his injuries in the district hospital.
Batham was involved in cracking down on the SIMI network in Khandwa district, which was one of the major bases of the outfit, and at that time the organisation's activists had warned him of dire consequences, said the police.
The police recovered two bikes from Teen Pulia area and it is suspected that the one without any number plate belongs to the assailant. The incident has sent shockwaves throughout the town.
Eye-witnesses said the assailant was carrying two revolvers and a sharp-edged long knife. The police have launched a massive hunt for the accused by sealing the borders of the district in search of the accused person.