Syed Rahil (25), who the police claim is a “notorious rowdy”, was shot in the knee at close range by a police constable at around 5 a.m. Friday near the Jyothi School in Banaswadi. The police were on the lookout for him in connection with a robbery in which he was the prime suspect.

Circle Inspector Rangappa, who pumped two rounds into Rahil's knee with his service pistol, said in his statement that he took the step as the suspect tried to resist arrest and attacked his colleagues.

According to the official version, the police received “credible information” around 3.30 a.m. that the suspect was wandering near the Jyothi School. A team, led by Inspector Rangappa and K.G. Halli Police Inspector Siddappa started combing the area. Rahil was intercepted near the school at around 5 a.m. and asked to surrender by constables Balaji and Mahesh. But he allegedly charged at them with a blade. This is when Inspector Rangappa opened fire but was “careful not to cause life-threatening injuries”. Police Constable Balaji sustained superficial injuries that were allegedly caused by Rahil's blade. He was treated as an outpatient at a government hospital.

Tight-lipped

As the police remained tight-lipped about the minute details of the operation, questions lingered about the circumstances that led to the “encounter”. It was not possible to obtain another version of the event as Rahil is undergoing medical treatment under police observation. Police sources, however, said that Rahil was a notorious gangster, wanted in over 15 cases involving serious offences such as attempt to murder, armed robbery and dacoity. He is also on the habitual offenders list of the K.G. Halli, Hennur and Banaswadi police stations.

The specific case, which resulted in his dramatic arrest, was filed by a private financier who had charged him with robbery.

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