Salman Khan residence firing: Accused dies by alleged suicide in police custody, brother accuses law enforcement of murder

The brother of one of the accused in the Salman Khan residence firing case has accused the law enforcement of foul play after his sibling, Anuj Thapan, died by allegedly committing suicide while on police custody on Wednesday.

Anuj Thapan allegedly committed suicide (left), actor Salman Khan. Photo courtesy: Free Press Journal
Anuj Thapan (left), actor Salman Khan. Photo courtesy: Free Press Journal

The accused, Thapan, had supplied weapons for the firing outside the actor’s Galaxy Apartment residence in Mumbai. A police officer revealed that Thapan took his own life in the bathroom of the Crime Branch lockup.

According to police sources, at around 11 AM, Thapan went to the lockup bathroom. Around 12:30 PM, when the police officer assigned to lockup duty went for checking, he saw that Thapan had committed suicide inside the bathroom. He used a cloth carpet to hang himself from the bathroom window of the lockup.

The policeman informed the senior officers that Thapan had hanged himself, after which he was immediately rushed to the nearby Gokuldas Tejpal (GT) Hospital, where doctors declared him dead on arrival.

A police officer revealed that in the lockup where Thapan committed suicide, a total of 10 suspects were detained, out of which two suspects, who were arrested by another unit, were taken away. The two suspects, identified as Vicky Gupta and Sagar Pal in the Salman Khan firing case, were taken for questioning by the crime branch officers.

At the time, there were a total of six suspects in the lockup. The officer mentioned that on Wednesday morning, all the detainees in the lockup were served tea and breakfast, and Thapan also had the same in the morning.


Police officials said that the area from the lockup to the bathroom entry is under CCTV surveillance, but there is no CCTV inside the bathroom where he hanged himself. A week ago, the police arrested two accused from Punjab while taking action. This included 37-year-old Sonu Subhash Bishnoi and 32-year-old Anuj Thapan.

Who was Anuj Thapan?

According to information, Anuj was in contact with the Lawrence Bishnoi gang. He worked as a truck helper. Mumbai Crime Branch recovered a pistol and some live cartridges from the Tapi River in Surat. The Crime Branch claimed that these were the same weapons used for the firing at Salman Khan’s house on April 14. Crime Branch officials said that Gupta and Pal were provided with weapons by Bishnoi and Thapan.

According to the police, these weapons were supplied by Thapan and Subhash. They had provided two country-made pistols and cartridges to the accused Gupta and Pal, who opened fire. Thapan already has several cases registered against him under Arms Act and extortion.

Third suicide in nine months

This is the third incident of suicide in lockup in the last nine months. Earlier, on September 8, 2023, Vikram Atwal, a 40-year-old housekeeping staffer at a residential society in Marol (Powai), reportedly died by suicide while in police custody in Andheri. Earlier, on September 3, Atwal was alleged to have killed air hostess Rupal Ogrey at her flat in Marol, Mumbai, before taking his own life in the bathroom.

On July 28th, Deepak Jadhav, 28, who was arrested in connection with a murder case, allegedly took his own life inside the Borivali General Police lock-up. Jadhav, a resident of Borivali West, was transferred to Yerwada Jail after being arrested by the Bharati Vidyapeeth Police Station in Pune in connection with the murder case.

Borivali police had detained Jadhav in connection with a case of assault with the court’s permission and he was kept in the general police lock-up until July 28th as per the court’s orders. However, before his next court appearance, he allegedly committed suicide. The motive behind this alleged suicide is still unclear.

(The article is published under a mutual content partnership arrangement between The Free Press Journal and Connected to India)