Shivraj Singh Chouhan

Sanjeev Kumar Singh, an Indian Police Service (IPS) officer of 1987-batch from Madhya Pradesh cadre, would be posthumously honored with a revolver for successfully solving an abduction case by Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Friday.

Chouhan will present the revolver to Sanjeev Kumar Singh’s wife Jyoti at a function in Bhopal, where the late officer served for long and made a name for himself during his initial phase of career.

A decorated officer, who also played a significant role in the establishing of country’s premier anti-terror agency , the National Investigation Agency (NIA), passed away last year due to COVID-19 complications. He had also served as Additional Director General with the Border Security Force (BSF).

The incident for which Sanjeev Kumar Singh is going to be awarded posthumously dates back to 12 January 2004 when a leading industrialist of Satna (Madhya Pradesh, Tirath Prasad Gupta, was abducted from an area under Uchehara police station. The incident led to a reign of terror among the industrialists as the kidnappers demanded a whopping Rs 5 crore for his release. The BJP had just came to power in the state.

The then CM, Uma Bharti , directed that the case should be handed over to the Special Task Force (STF) as the kidnappers were making calls from different states to confuse the investigating agencies about their location. The caller’s location was being traced to Nepal, Eastern Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal. During the calls, they demanded the handing over of the random money through the Hawala route at Dubai and other countries.

Due to this, it was becoming a difficult task for the police to locate the kidnappers and hence STF was asked to come in.

Sanjeev Kumar Singh was at that time serving as a Deputy Inspector General of Police with Crime Investigation Department (CID) of Madhya Pradesh police. After activating his sources and employing his resources, he received vital inputs that led to the establishment of the involvement of hardcore criminals, Anil Singh alias Company Singh and Vikram Singh alias Mangal Singh in the case. Their location was traced in Patna (Bihar).

Interestingly, Singh himself was born in Bihar’s Samastipur district. On 29 February 2004, Singh got an important information that Anil Singh was reaching a specific point in Patna. Thereafter, Singh moved swiftly and arrested Anil Singh and started interrogated him to know the whereabouts of abducted industrialist.

Based on the tip off provided by Anil Singh, the officials and personnel from STF, and Bihar Police stormed a hideout of the criminals in Aurangabad, Bihar and successfully rescued Tirath Prasad Gupta.

The family members of Gupta later voluntarily handed over a cheque of Rs 10 lakh to MP Police for the successful operation that Sanjeev Kumar Singh had meticulously designed to rescue Gupta.