Criminal killed in police encounter

A 26-year-old criminal, involved in two murder cases, was killed in daylight cross firing between a police team and five men on a national highway at outer Delhi’s Alipur on Wednesday afternoon, police said.

Identified as Rakesh, the deceased was a native of Bahadurgarh in Haryana. He was rushed to Babu Jagjivan Ram Hospital where he died during treatment. Doctors said he received a bullet injury in his hip.

The incident took place at Palla traffic intersection on National Highway number 1 at GT Karnal Road around 3 pm. Police said that for the last three months they were trying to trace Manoj Morkheri, a 27-year-old criminal carrying a reward of Rs 1 lakh.

“Three days ago, through technical surveillance and a tip-off, we learnt that he was to arrive in Delhi along with his associates on Wednesday to commit a crime,” said a senior police officer.

A police team spotted Morkheri’s Maruti Ritz car and began chasing it after informing two other police teams. The two other teams of crime branch consisted of around eight officers who began the chase after following the trail.

Around 500 metres away from Palla traffic intersection, the accused sensed that they were being followed. When Morkheri reached the traffic intersection, three police teams blocked the car and asked the occupants to surrender.

Manoj Morkheri and his associates began firing at the police in an attempt to flee.
“Five armed men inside the car opened fire at crime branch officers after they were asked to stop. The team retaliated and managed to apprehend the criminals in a few minutes. During cross firing, however, a criminal identified as Rakesh received bullet injuries,” said Additional Commissioner of Police Ravindra Yadav. Three accused were nabbed, one received bullet injury and another managed to escape, he added.

Police said Manoj Morkheri is a resident of Rohtak in Haryana and is wanted in various cases of abduction for ransom, extortion and attempt to murder in Delhi, Haryana and Rajasthan. Vivek and Praveen were the other two arrested. The driver, identified as Rinku, managed to escape.

Police said Morkheri was planning to construct a hotel in Nepal and was collecting money for the purpose.

In March 2003, during his second year of graduation, he would visit his cousin Sandeep in jail during which he came in contact with some other criminals. He allegedly helped one of them escape from jail. His crime graph has soared since then.

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