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News updated at 10:57 PM IST

Chadha brothers' murders: Case shifted to Crime Branch

New Delhi, 24 Nov, 2012 (IANS) 17:13 IST
A day after the arrest of Sukhdev Singh Namdhari, the key witness in the double murders of liquor baron Ponty Chadha and his brother, the probe has been transferred to the crime branch. Delhi's south district police were investigating the case earlier.

"Seven people have been arrested in connection with the case. Further investigations will be conducted by the Crime Branch of Delhi Police," a senior officer told IANS. Namdhari, who was arrested from Uttarakhand Friday on charges of trespassing, was presented here before the Saket court Saturday by the south district police. The court granted police his custody for five days.

Namdhari was the main conspirator in the case, police told the court. Namdhari claims police have falsely implicated him in the case. Police sources said that Namdhari had revealed that he too fired at Ponty's brother Hardeep in the shootout at Chhattarpur's farm number 42. Ponty Chadha had gone to the farmhouse with Namdhari and his personal security officer (PSO) Sachin Tyagi.

The two brothers were killed in the gun-battle allegedly over a property dispute Nov 17. Namdhari was sacked as chairman of the Uttarakhand Minority Commission after the shootout. He has more than three dozen cases against him, which include murder, attempt to murder, dacoity and others. He was appointed the minority panel chief by the erstwhile Bharatiya Janata Party government in the state.

Namdhari went missing from New Delhi after lodging a first information report (FIR) following the shootout. Namdhari was present at the spot when the shooting took place. Deputy Commissioner of Police Chhaya Sharma told reporters Friday: "Namdhari remained a suspect in the shooting incident. As of today, everybody is a suspect. We are not into giving any clean chit to anybody. It is the job of court. All the suspects connected to the case are under the scanner for trespassing as well as the murders," Sharma said.

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