They have admitted to passing by the Leelanagar Road opposite Country Club junction where a cobbler was found shot dead on Sunday

Two businessmen — Varun Solanki and Arun Solanki — have come under the police radar in the shocking murder of a cobbler in the S.R. Nagar police station limits.

The brothers admitted to the interrogators that they had passed by the Leelanagar Road opposite Country Club junction where the cobbler, P. Ashok, was found murdered, a little while after Saturday midnight.

While Varun was in a Mercedes Benz, Arun was in his Duster – both brothers had travelled in that route between 12.15 a.m. and 1 a.m., West Zone DCP V.N.V. Satyanarayana said.

Duo has pistols

Both have firearm licences and .32 company made pistols. Varun was partying in Country Club late on Saturday night, while his brother was coming from a hotel.

“Both claimed that they were in inebriated while leaving the club and the hotel,” the DCP said. Arun was arrested by police a few weeks ago after he opened fire in the air with his pistol following a clash at an apartment building in S.R. Nagar. His weapon was seized and he had come out on bail.

Varun had his licensed pistol with him with 20 live rounds. Ballistic experts told the police that the bullet used in the killing of cobbler is old and that the firing pin marks, its size and shape found on the bullet indicate it was not fired from Varun’s pistol.

“The suspicion is that a country-made pistol was used to shoot the cobbler. Such a pistol was recently seized in Langerhouz after busting a gang from Bihar,” an investigator said. It is being verified if the gang had more such pistols in their possession.

The killer fired at Ashok from close range and from a top angle. If the shooter fired at the cobbler travelling in a four-wheeler, the cartridge would have fallen inside the vehicle. Investigators surmise that death was not instant for the cobbler.

It was a small bullet and the cobbler apparently died of profuse bleeding for over an hour. His life could have been saved had he been shifted to hospital immediately, they felt. Police have also cross-checked with several firearm licence holders possessing .32 pistols on their whereabouts on the intervening night.

The S.R. Nagar police questioned over 200 persons in the case but couldn’t secure any crucial clues. Ashok lived alone in Hyderabad while his estranged wife and two sons reside in Nizamabad. A team had gone to Nizamabad but failed to find any leads.

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