A retired Army captain today allegedly bludgeoned six persons to death with a rod in a killing spree here that lasted about two hours, police said.
The accused, identified as Naresh Dhankhad (45), went on the rampage between 2 to 4 am in a two km stretch between Agra Chowk and Camp Colony, taking advantage of low visibility due dense fog.
He killed his first victim in the second floor of a private hospital, before hitting the streets to kill five others and injure one.
A resident of Macchgar near Ballabhgarh, Dhankhad also attacked the policemen when they tried to nab him.
He had joined the Army in 1999 as a lieutenant and taken retirement on medical grounds in 2003. He then joined the Haryana Agriculture department as an assistant development officer in 2006, a police spokesperson said.
He was working as a sub-divisional officer with the Health Department.
His first victim was a woman named Anjum who was an attendant of a person admitted in the ICU of the hospital. She was sleeping on the second floor where the accused managed to gain entry, Palwal Superintendent of Police Sulochana Gajraj said.
The incident was recorded on a CCTV camera and the accused can be purportedly seen coming inside the doors wearing trousers and a sweater and carrying the rod.
He then went to Agra Road intersection where he killed three more people. Then a little farther, he killed two others by repeatedly hitting them on the head. Gajraj said as soon as the police received information, they started sending people, who were either sleeping or working outside, indoors.
She said checkpoints were set up in the town, which is 80 km from Delhi. “When we zeroed-in on him, he was searching for another target and almost had his seventh victim as he had injured him,” she said.
He was arrested around 7 am when he was roaming in a street near a private hospital in Palwal, the SP said, adding that thick fog in the town had reduced visibility making it easy for the accused to target the victims.
Dhankar tried to resist arrest and even assaulted the policemen before being overpowered, she said.