Noida police on Sunday arrested four people in connection with the murder of BJP leader Vijay Pandit.
Pandit was allegedly shot dead by four unidentified assailants in Dadri area, Greater Noida on Saturday night. The incident happened when Pandit (37), Dadri Nagar Panchayat Chairman Geeta Pandit's husband, was returning home from his brother's shop at around 8.30 pm.
Pandit, a former district BJP Vice President, was shot five times in the head and other parts of the body.
"They got off their bikes and began firing at Pandit. He was shot five times. Before anyone could react, the assailants fled the spot," the Indian Express quoted a police officer as saying.
Pandit was rushed to the Dadri's Mohan Swarup Hospital and was later shifted to Yashoda Hospital in Ghaziabad, where he was declared dead, reported ANI.
After hearing about the incident, BJP workers and villagers reached the site and triggered protests by setting ablaze around 16 vehicles near Dadri Kotwali on GT Road. They stoned buses and other passing vehicles in the area.
The BJP leader's supporters also attacked the police, claiming they did not act on the death threats Pandit received. They have alleged that Pandit had started a campaign against an extortion racket targeting traders in Dadri area, and received death threats from extortionists but the cops did not take any action.
The angry mob started pelting stones at the police personnel deployed in the area. They also allegedly fired at the policemen and the cops had to fire in retaliation.
Dadri (UP): Supporters protest against BJP Leader Vijay Pandit shot dead pic.twitter.com/RQ6wDmmL1J
— ANI (@ANI_news) June 8, 2014
As the protests escalated, all roads leading to Ghaziabad - including the GT Road that connects Dadri to Ghaziabad and Sikandrabad, and the Dadri railway crossing road - were closed down. Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC) personnel and Rapid Action team were pressed into service.
"The situation in Dadri is very tense. A businessman was murdered in a similar manner recently. Dadri is currently under tight security and we are taking all steps to ensure that the violence doesn't escalate further," a senior police officer stated.