Ponty-hardeep murder: Chhattarpur shootout: Court to declare 8 as proclaimed offenders

Sacked Uttarakhand Minorities Commission chief Sukhdev Singh Namdhari's eight associates, wanted for their alleged roles in killing Hardeep Singh, brother of liquor baron Ponty Chadha, in a shootout in the capital, will be declared proclaimed offenders by a Delhi court if they fail to appear before it on March 11.

Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Mukesh Kumar ordered initiation of proceedings under Section 82 of the Code of Criminal Proceedings (CrPC) to declare the eight men, all belonging to Bareilly in Uttar Pradesh, absconding.

The eight men are Hardayal Singh, Satnam Singh, Baj Singh, Balkar Singh, Pargat Singh, Kulbir Singh, Bakshish Singh and Dharmender.

Under Section 82 of the CrPC, if the court has a reason to believe that the accused is absconding or concealing himself, it orders the prosecution to publish a notice about the accused or publicly announce or affix information about them near their house or public places to make them appear in court.

The judge said since the NBWs issued against the eight could not be executed at the addresses, he was satisfied that a case has been made out to initiate the process of declaring them absconding.

"NBWs against all accused persons remained unexecuted. After going through the report, I am satisfied that the accused persons have absconded. Process under Section 82 CrPC be issued against them for March 11," the magistrate said.

Ponty and Hardeep, who had a property dispute, were killed in a shootout at their Chhattarpur farmhouse in South Delhi on November 17, 2012.

Police had earlier arrested Namdhari and his personal security officer Sachin Tyagi in the case. Namdhari has been booked on the charge of murder. The two, along with eight other co-accused, are in judicial custody till January 7.

All the 10 accused have been booked on charges of hatching criminal conspiracy, attempt to murder, dacoity, assault, under the Arms Act, destruction of evidence, trespass, illegal confinement and kidnapping.

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