Ponty Chadha killing: Two warring brothers & a united family

Ponty Chadha

At the Lodhi Crematorium, several hundreds waited for the Chadhas from 4 in the afternoon. "I saw the obituary in the papers. It said the cremation would be at 4.30 pm. Later, we heard that since the body was released only at 4.15 pm, and the cremation was postponed to 6.30 pm. Now we hear that it will be around 9 pm, because the hospital and the police have goofed up. But I will stay. He was an important symbol for the Sikh community," said Harpreet Singh, who met Ponty at Gurdwara Rakabganj. He said he knew Ponty for the past six years.

Perhaps it was a sign of the family's influence that despite the confusion and the delay, the crowd at the crematorium just continued to swell. There were nearly 400 people at the first assigned time of 4.30 pm, but by 9 pm, around 700 had come to attend.

"The two brothers used to live in my colony in Moradabad, and I have come to pay my respects. Though I hadn't met them for several years, I will not leave until the last rites are completed," a shopkeeper from Moradabad Sandeep Sharma said.

When the bodies finally arrived at the crematorium at 9.15 pm, people from all walks of life were present. Om Prakash Chautala and Moradabad MP Azharuddin paid their respects. The luxury cars of the family's business associates lined Mathura Road.

And also present were small shopkeepers, like Singh, who grew up with the brothers.

Despite the bitter fight that had lead to the deaths, the family had maintained that the two brothers would be cremated together. "People told us that since there was no problem with Hardeep's body, we should get the cremation done. But the family decided that they would be cremated side by side," a family member said.

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