‘Chhahmaar’ gang behind brutal murder of Prayagraj’s Pandey family nabbed

On 17 July, two weeks after the brutal murder of Dr. Vimlesh Pandey & family, the police has finally solved the case and arrested the gang responsible for it. The Badaun & Rampur based criminals, who are part of the notorious all-Muslim chhahmaar (6 killer) gang, are known history-sheeters and the gang leader Mobin was carrying a reward of Rs 50,000. They have confessed to the gruesome murders.

Chhahmaar Gang Members

As reported in Bhaskar News, the sensational murders of the well-liked Pandey family occurred on Thurday night, 2 July. The local villagers were aghast and shocked at the brutality of the murder. The assailants had slit the throats of all 5 members of the family, four of whom died, while the mother Rachna was left barely alive.

The victims included Vimlesh Pandey, son Prince, daughters Somu & Sheebu. The head of the family Vimlesh was a local vaid (Ayurvedic doctor) and was well known in the area. On the night of the incident, the family had gone to bed after dinner when the criminals entered their home and attacked the family with sharp weapons. In the morning, when villagers came to their home, they discovered the bloodied bodies lying there. The girls were found with their cloths in disheveled condition which indicated sexual assault before murder.

Pandey Family Children

In this blind murder case, the police initially worked on angles of robbery and illicit relationship but none of the theories fitted perfectly in preliminary investigation. The level of violence perpetrated on the victims indicated a personal enmity angle as well, but since Vimlesh was not known for having enmity with anyone, the personal revenge angle also did not hold out for long.

They also took help of FSL (Forensic Science Laboratory) team and dog squad but could not get a breakthrough. Later they discovered that there have been similar group murders in the area earlier and this gave police a pattern to work on. With the help of other police stations and STF (Special Task Force), they concentrated on professional robber gangs and zeroed in on one Chhahmaar gang that used to recce the neighborhood as beggars in the daytime and after finding a suitable target, strike them at night.

Police Press Brief

Gang-leader Mobin was arrested after a police encounter on 14th July from Badaun district, while the other 5 gang members – Shahrukh, Sarik, Dabar s/o Ashraf, Warish Khan,  and Farman – were arrested on 16th from Rampur district. They have been booked under FIR no 136/20, section 302, 394, 457. The gang members had also cases registered against them in Udham Singh Nagar, Uttarakhand and Bharatpur, Rajasthan. Police recovered sharp weapons like axe, choppers and knives from accused which were reportedly used in the crime. Vimlesh Pandey’s mobile was also recovered and one Surendra Yadav has also been arrested for tampering with the mobile and destroying evidence.

The Chhahmaar gangs are notorious and one of the most violent crime syndicate of North Bharat. Almost all gang members of this closed knit community are Muslims and they generally target Hindu temples and homes that are secluded from densely populated areas. After selecting a target place, they generally camp around it early in evening and strike after nightfall.

A policeman, known to this writer, admitted that visiting a crime scene at a site hit by a Chhahmaar gang is hard even for seasoned policemen because of extreme violence perpetrated by these criminals on unarmed victims. It is usual for these gang-members to torture every victim before killing them in gruesome manner. Not satisfied with killing, they even mutilate bodies and splash blood on walls of crime scene before leaving. After committing crime in night, they generally melt away by morning crowd and disappear without a trace.

Earlier known cases involving Chhahmaar gang include Sisvan pujari murder case &  Radha Bhatt murder. Earlier, gang members were nabbed from Bharatpur and Deoband as well but their ability to change area and identity quickly after committing a crime is what keeps this notorious cult out of reach of law.


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