A hired killer has been arrested in Kanpur on Monday for his alleged role in the murder of RTI activist Shehla Masood in Bhopal, the fifth person to be apprehended in the high-profile case.

Tabish Khan, a cousin of another key accused Shaquib Ali ’Danger’, was arrested from his Bekanganj residence by the Uttar Pradesh Special Task Force this morning.

He was produced before a special court in Lucknow by the CBI which got his transit remand. Khan will be taken to Bhopal for further questioning.

He was arrested based on the inputs given by Irfan, another shooter already in CBI custody in connection with the case, STF circle officer Triveni Singh said in Kanpur.

The arrest of Khan has established that there were three shooters involved in Masood’s killing, CBI sources said.

Khan is believed to have got the murder contract from Ali, establishing latter’s role in the murder and how he approached the killers based in Kanpur, the sources said.

They said Khan is suspected to be the key supplier of arms to Irfan.

During questioning, Irfan had confessed that he and two others were paid Rs three lakh for killing the RTI activist in Bhopal last year.

Irfan had revealed that he along with Shanu Alaunga, a sharpshooter who was shot dead in an unrelated incident in November last year in Kanpur, and another shooter had been paid by a Bhopal-based person to carry out the murder.

Masood was shot dead outside her house at Koh-e-Fiza locality on August 16 last year when she was going to take part in protests in support of Jan Lokpal Bill.

CBI has already arrested Bhopal based architect Zahida Parvez, her aide Saba Farooqui, Ali and Irfan in connection with the case. Parvez had allegedly masterminded the killing as she resented Masood’s close relations with BJP MLA Dhruv Narayan Singh with whom she was obsessed with, sources said.

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