The CBI has named RJD strongman and ex-MP Mohammad Shahabuddin as an accused in the murder of journalist Rajdev Ranjan. The journalist was murdered in May 2016. The Hindi daily Hindustan’s Siwan bureau chief Ranjan (42) was shot dead at Phal Mandi near Siwan station, barely half a km away from Town police station. Two bullets hit Ranjan— one on his forehead and the other, his neck.
Five persons were arrested in connection with the case within a few days of the murder. Bihar Police ADGP Sunil Kumar had said the five men were engaged by contract killer Laddan Mian, known to be close to former RJD MP Mohammad Shahabuddin; but the police had not found evidence directly linking Shahabuddin with the murder.
Ranjan’s elder brother Kalicharan, had said after the murder: “Everyone can guess who the killer is, but who can name him? Let there be a CBI probe. We have little trust in the Grand Alliance government”.
Mohammad Shahabuddin has several other cases pending against him.
Ranjan, a postgraduate who also held a law degree, started his journalistic career with Hindustan nearly 16 years ago as a stringer from Siwan. He later became a staff member. He took over as the newspaper’s Siwan bureau chief about seven years ago. He had covered Siwan politics and crime extensively and had penned several reports on court proceedings against Shahabuddin.