‘Land grabber’ shot useless by bikers, police suspect property dispute

NOIDA: A 60-year-old man, accused of grabbing land on a massive scale, was shot dead by two bike-borne men in in Sector 49 on Monday evening. was shot several times from point-blank range and collapsed on the 10-acre plot where he was supervising the foundation work of a commercial plaza near road.
Nearly 10 construction workers present on the spot fled after hearing the gunshots. Goyal was rushed to a hospital where doctors declared him brought dead. The police suspect that he was killed over old property and land disputes.

Goyal, a resident of Ghaziabad, was allegedly involved in land grabbing in Noida, Greater Noida, Ghaziabad and Bulandshahr for nearly two decades. In 2005, Noida police had arrested him in connection with land scams worth a staggering Rs 2,500 crore.

Shwetabh Pandey, circle officer-III, Noida said the shooting took place at around 5 pm. “Goyal was supervising the construction work. Two men on a Bajaj Pulsar arrived there and parked the bike outside the boundary wall of the plot. They soon took out pistols and fired at Goyal. The bullets hit his head and abdomen,” he said.

The cops from Sector 49 police station rushed him to district hospital where doctors declared him brought dead. The body has been sent for post-mortem and reports are awaited. The police found seven used cartridges on the spot.

Rakesh Kumar, a local resident, said the criminals had some conversation with Goyal and then took out a revolver. “Goyal raised his hands up and requested them against shooting. However, the men fired at him and fled in the same vehicle. It seems they were hired shooters,” he said.

Goyal owned the plot and he was planning to construct a market place and a marriage hall. There were some bricks, tiles and some unused construction materials at the spot.

In fact, Goyal had filed a complaint at Sector 49 police station in January alleging threat by four persons. Police said they registered a case and arrested the accused.

Goyal, a resident of Ghaziabad, was allegedly involved in land grabbing in Noida, Greater Noida, Ghaziabad and Bulandshahr for nearly two decades. In 2005, Noida police had arrested him in connection with land scams.

Sources said that Goyal would take junior revenue officials, who have recently retired, on his payroll. The officials would help him manipulate land records to show that the concerned land belonged to him. Goyal would get the records manipulated by registry department officials after bribing them. It is also said that whenever he came across an upright official, he would move some court to get a stay order, until someone more accommodating replaces the upright officer. Goyal has at least 18 cases of land-grabbing pending against him in Noida and Ghaziabad.

DM B N Singh said that the was purely a criminal offence. “He was a resident of Ghaziabad. The details of his cases are not readily available,” he said. Goyal’s family members and relatives visited mortuary but refused to comment.

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