Thursday, January 22, 2009

Sowmya Mishra’s gunman opens fire

Staff Reporter
Physical condition suggests he consumed liquor

The gunman suspended following the incident



HYDERABAD: Panic gripped the highly-secured Andhra Pradesh Special Police (APSP) Quarters at Kondapur in Madhapur on Thursday morning when DIG Sowmya Mishra’s gunman, Lokesh, went on a spree of firing in the air with his 9 mm service pistol.

Policemen initially thought Lokesh had successfully resisted a Maoist attack as he claimed to have seen some persons moving suspiciously. “After searching the area, however, we realised he was hallucinating apparently due to delayed influence of liquor he consumed the previous night,” Ms. Mishra said.

Ms. Mishra worked as SP of Maoist-affected Warangal district before being promoted as DIG and posted to the APSP. Lokesh was on duty from Wednesday morning and supposed to be relieved on Thursday. The DIG was busy getting her children ready for school when three gunshots were heard around 6.30 a.m. The stunned police officer alerted her security personnel even while occupants of other quarters too rushed out. But Lokesh, who was supposed to be standing guard outside the DIG quarters, was not there. Instead, he climbed the roof-top security post and fired six more shots in the air.

Meanwhile, another constable about to join guard duty in a building close to the DIG quarters picked up his service firearm, jumped over the wall and climbed the rooftop security post.

“I opened three rounds in the air outside the quarter and ran up to the rooftop security post to take the guard’s support after noticing suspicious movement. But there was nobody and I opened six more rounds,” Lokesh told his higher-ups. The constable was sent for medical examination.

Suspended


Ms. Mishra explained that though the medical test report did not confirm he was inebriated, the constable’s physical condition suggested he had consumed liquor. Lokesh, who was suspended following the incident, had earlier worked as gunman for four APSP commandants, served the Greyhounds and also involved in exchange of fire with the Maoists.

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