Hyderabad, Jan 4: Police Tuesday continued their hunt for the killer of gangster-politician Gangula Suryanarayana Reddy alias Maddelachervu Suri, who was shot dead allegedly by an aide travelling with him in the same car. The autopsy report said he was shot at a close range of two-three centimetres.
Police denied reports that Bhanu Kiran, the suspected killer who was also Suri’s close associate, had been arrested or that he gave himself up. A police officer said they were still looking for him.
Suri, 39, was shot dead in his car at Navodaya Colony in Yousufguda near Jubilee Hills Monday evening when he was returning home after meeting his lawyer.
Driver Madhumohan Reddy alias Madhu told police that Kiran, who was seated in the back seat, used a gun with a silencer to fire two bullets into Suri’s head.
Kiran reportedly escaped after the shooting while the driver rushed a bleeding Suri to a hospital in the same car.
Hyderabad Police Commissioner A.K. Khan said they were verifying the driver’s version as he was the only witness in the case.
Forensic expert Narayana Reddy, who conducted the autopsy at the Osmania University here, Tuesday said Suri died on the spot and doctors at Apollo Hospital tried to revive him as per protocol.
“The bullets were fired from a revolver or a pistol from a distance of two to three centimetres. One bullet hit the neck and the other the head, resulting in his death,” Reddy said.
Doctors at Apollo had said Suri died two hours after he was brought to the hospital in a very critical condition. The forensic opinion strengthened the suspicion and the driver’s statement that the man sitting behind Suri shot him dead.
Police registered a first information report (FIR) on the basis of the driver’s statement.
Kiran is suspected to have killed Suri following differences over sharing of money in a property dispute.
Some of Suri’s relatives, however, alleged that his rivals bought over Kiran to kill him. They suspect the involvement of the followers of slain politician Paritala Ravi.
The factional feud between Suri and Ravi led to a Ram Gopal Varma movie “Rakta Charitra” on the four-decade long rivalry between the two families.
Suri was the key accused in the 2005 murder of former Andhra Pradesh minister and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leader Ravi and in the 1997 Jubilee Hills car bomb blast that killed 26 people.
Suri, a Congress supporter, was sentenced to life in the car blast case but was released in December 2009 after spending 13 years in prison after the government granted him remission.
Suri’s body was taken in an ambulance to his native village Maddelachervu in Anantapur district, where a partial shutdown was observed Tuesday on a call given by his followers.
His supporters, including women, were seen crying outside his ancestral house in Maddelachervu.
Suri’s last rites will be performed Wednesday, his family said.
State Revenue minister N. Raghuveera Reddy, who also hails from Anantapur, visited Osmania Hospital to pay tributes.
“I condemn any murder no matter who commits the crime. We should put a full stop to this,” Raghuveera Reddy told reporters. –(IANS)