A gang of assailants looted a jewellery shop and stabbed the shop owner, a relative of an MLC, to death at the busy ESI Hospital junction, Rajajinagar, on Saturday afternoon.
A group of miscreants barged into the shop on Saturday afternoon and looted the premises before stabbing owner Shravan Kumar Pokarna (46), brother-in-law of MLC Lehar Singh of the BJP. Pokarna has been running Rishab Jewellers in the area since long.
Nithyananda, a goldsmith working at the shop returned from the central business district around 3:25 pm. As soon as he entered the shop, he was shocked to find Pokarna lying in a pool of blood with multiple stab injuries.
He immediately alerted Venugopal of the next shop and rushed to Rajajinagar Police Station to alert the police. Senior police officers rushed to the spot.
An officer said that the victim had sustained two stab wounds in the abdomen and the chest. By the time the incident came to light, he was dead.
The senior cop also said that Pokarna last called up Nithyananda on his cellphone at 2:52 pm asking the latter to come to the shop as he (Pokarna) had to go out for lunch. Nityananda came to the shop by 3:25 pm, only to find Pokarna dead. S Murugan, Joint Commissioner (Crime-East), told Deccan Herald that the assailants had looted most of the jewellery from the shop, clearly suggesting a murder for gain.
Police suspect that a gang of at least three people to have struck at the shop. The worth of valuables stolen, however, is yet to be ascertained.
Venugopal, owner of Mahesh Opticals next door, told Deccan Herald that he did not hear any commotion from the shop. He said he was in his shop at the time of the incident and came to know of it only after the goldsmith came and told him.
Lehar Singh, who visited the spot along with Rajajinagar MLA and Law Minister S Suresh Kumar, told Deccan Herald that the deceased was his brother-in-law and a close relative. He said Pokarna was from Begun village, Chittore district, Rajasthan.
He was a resident of the city for the past 20 years. “While the family lived at Chamarajpet, Pokarna was managing the shop at ESI Hospital junction for the last seven years. He was running another jewellery shop at Vidyapeetha Circle in a partnership earlier and later had turned independent and started the shop,” Singh said. Porkana was married to Rekha.
Rishab, a 16-year-old boy, a pre-university student, and daughter Shikha, 21, pursuing her final year degree course in the City, are their children.