In a startling turn of events, a lawyer had shot his colleague dead at the district court campus in Uttar Pradesh's Shahjahanpur on Monday afternoon. Bhupendra Pratap Singh was shot dead on the third floor of the court building on Monday afternoon and a country-made firearm was found near the site of the crime. Hours later, lawyer Suresh Chandra Gupta was arrested in connection with the murder.
Gupta however insists that he was driven to take action due to his colleague's efforts to incriminate him. "I could not eat, I could not sleep at night...I was fed up. Either I would have committed suicide or killed him..." he can be heard saying. He contends that he had had 24 cases filed against him over a property dispute.
Police sources had earlier said that there was rivalry between the two over some legal issues. Four police personnel have been suspended for laxity in ensuring security inside the court campus. According to reports, the victim had filed two dozen cases against Gupta.
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Monday attacked the Yogi Adityanath government over a lawyer being shot dead allegedly by another on the Shahjahanpur district court premises and said the incident was another chilling reminder that no one is safe in today's Uttar Pradesh.
"The legal and judicial fraternity is an integral pillar of our democracy. The brutal murder of an advocate in broad daylight in court premises in Shahjahanpur is another chilling reminder that no one is safe in today's Uttar Pradesh - not women, not farmers and now not advocates," Priyanka Gandhi tweeted.
The Bar Council of UP meanwhile has asked lawyers across the state to abstain from judicial work on Wednesday in protest against the killing of a lawyer in the court premises of Shahjahanpur district.