Thrissur: In a shocking incident, three goons shot at a shopkeeper here with an air gun here after he refused to patch a punctured tyre of their vehicle. The police identified the victim as Manikandan, a native of Palakkad who runs a puncture repair shop at Koorkenchery in the town and the assailants as Rafeek, Ditto and Shajan. While Manikandan was admitted to hospital, the gang members were arrested by the police after a chase.
The incident took place around 8:30pm on Sunday. According to the police, the goons were provoked as Manikandan did not seal a punctured tyre. They allegedly hit him on the face with the air gun and shot at his leg. However, the goons fled from the spot as the police arrived soon.
Inspector P Lal Kumar and team from the East Police Station immediately gave a chase and nabbed the gangsters. The air gun used in the attack was also recovered from some shrubbery, where the goons had abandoned it.
The police are investigating how the goons got possession of the air gun. Shafeek, Ditto and Shajan are history-sheeters and were earlier involved in several criminal cases, said officers. During their arrest after the air gun incident, all three were under the influence of drugs, the police added.
Incidentally, a series of murders had taken place in Thrissur over the past few days and the police had launched a crackdown on goons. Many of the habitual offenders were also charged with Kerala Anti-social Activities (Prevention) Act (KAAPA). The shooting at Koorkenchery took place even as these raids continued.
Meanwhile, officers said that Manikandan’s injuries were not serious.