Shri Prakash Shukla

Prakash Shukla was an Indian gangster and contract killer active during the 1990s majorly in the state of Uttar Pradesh .[1] He was killed on 22 September 1998 in an encounter with the UP STF.[2] He was about 25 at the time of his death.[1][3]

LifeEdit

Prakash Shukla was born in Mamkhor village, near hata bazar Gorakhpur. He is a good student . In 1993, Shukla killed a man called Rakesh Tiwari, because he had whistled at Shukla's sister. This was Shukla's first criminal record. Following the murder, Shukla escaped to Bangkok. He returned and became associated with Suraj Bhan of Mokama, Bihar.[4][3] He was once the most dreaded and ruthless gangster of Uttar Pradesh and North Bihar who created panic among others in the business but no one dared to confront him in his area of influence. He had become the biggest headache for the politicians too who complained to the police department to take urgent action against him.

In early 1997, he killed Virendra Shahi, a politician and a member of the state's underworld, in Lucknow.He started the trend of clearing AK-47 and Carbine magazines by spreading bullets on the enemies. This trend is being followed in Chicago of east (Gorakhpur) till now. It was presumed that Hari Shankar Tiwari, who was an opponent of Sahi, would be targeted next as Shukla wanted the Chillupar assembly seat.[4][3][5] In April 1998, the Uttar Pradesh police formed a STF to capture or kill 43 top criminals of the state, Shukla was on the list.[3]

On 26 May 1998, Shukla's gang kidnapped Kunal Rastogi, the son of a businessman, from Botanical Gardens, Lucknow. His father was shot dead as he tried to save him. The gang allegedly took 50 million to free the boy.[4][6][7] In June 1998, he also allegedly killed Brij Behari Prasad, a minister from Bihar, in a Patna hospital where he was undergoing treatment. Soon after, Sakshi Maharaj, a Member of the Parliament from Farrukhabad, had claimed that Shukla had taken a contract of 60 million to kill then Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Kalyan Singh. But, he did not reveal the source of this information.[8]

DeathEdit

On 8 and 15 September 1998, episodes about Prakash Shukla were broadcast on the crime show India's Most Wanted. The host of the show, Suhaib Ilyasi, claimed that he got threat calls from Shukla after that. He has also said that he got an anonymous phone call on 10 September 1998 saying Shukla and his associates had been seen in a blue Daewoo Cielo near AIIMS Delhi. On 21 September, another anonymous caller said that Shukla and his associates had been seen in Ghaziabad in a blue Daewoo Cielo. The tips were forwarded to the Delhi and Uttar Pradesh police.[2]

On 22 September 1998, Shukla was shot dead by the Uttar Pradesh police's Special Task Force (STF), outside an apartment complex in Ghaziabad. Shukla was hiding in the Vasant Kunj area of Delhi. He had come to Ghaziabad to visit his girlfriend. He was on his way to the Palam airport presumably to escape to Ranchi, where his arms-dealer Suraj Bhan lived.[1][2][3] By this time, the task force, which was formed in April, had spent 10 million in the investigation and had flown 1,00,000 km between Patna, Lucknow and Delhi trying to track him down.[1] He was tracked down primarily by his mobile phone. He used to change SIM cards but he had used one number more than other for a week.[3] The mobile phone and diary recovered after the shootout provided evidence of his connections to politicians.[9]

After DeathEdit

After his death, the STF found that Shukla was connected to various politicians, including members of Kalyan Singh government, and members of the Indian Police Service and Indian Administrative Service. They had helped him evade the police dragnet and some politicians had provided him shelter. Some had taken money from Shukla in exchange for these favours.[1] On 5 November 1998, Pritam Singh, a member of the STF, was shot dead by members of Shukla's gang.[10][11]

In popular cultureEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e "Criminal's Bedfellows". India Today. 26 October 1998. Retrieved 23 May 2015.
  2. ^ a b c "Gangster killed following tip-off". Rediff. 25 September 1998. Retrieved 21 May 2015.
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Death of gunslinger". India Today. 5 October 1998. Retrieved 23 May 2015.
  4. ^ a b c Cite error: The named reference Badfellows was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  5. ^ "Rule of Flaw". India Today. 24 November 1997. Retrieved 23 May 2015.
  6. ^ "Where fear is the key". India Today. 6 July 1998.
  7. ^ "Elastic standards". Frontline. 17 July 1998. Retrieved 23 May 2015.
  8. ^ "Kalyan Singh's would-be assassin bumped off". Rediff. 23 September 1998. Retrieved 23 May 2015.
  9. ^ a b "STF saga on celluloid". The Times of India. 2 July 2005. Retrieved 23 May 2015.
  10. ^ "UP police inspector's murder solved". The Tribune (India). 13 February 1999. Retrieved 23 May 2015.
  11. ^ "Not an ordinary crime". The Tribune (India). 7 November 1998. Retrieved 23 May 2015.
  12. ^ "Special Task Force behind Sehar story". Mid Day. 17 June 2005. Retrieved 23 May 2015.
  13. ^ "Hero police - Increasingly the arm of the law is being shown in a new bright light". The Telegraph (India). 29 July 2005. Retrieved 23 May 2015.
  14. ^ "LSD to a UP Gangster". Hindustan Times. 9 September 2010. Retrieved 23 May 2015.