Hyderabad: The Rachakonda commissioner of police invoked the Preventive Detention (PD) Act on 29 January and detained two notorious land grabbers who had attempted to murder government officials. The two have been lodged in Cherlapalli Central prison.

Poonam Chand Kumavath (50) and his son Nihal Chand (27) are from Pali district in Rajasthan but live in Jawaharnagar. They run Poonam Electricals and Hardware shop on Balajinagar main road. The two have been involved in trespassing cases and illegal settlement of lands.

The father-son duo had erected illegal structures on government land. On 25 February 2020, when revenue officials questioned them, the two men attacked and threatened the officials with dire consequences. However, the authorities managed to demolish the illegal structure. But overnight, the duo again raised another structure.

On 24 December, on the specific requisition of the revenue authorities, the inspector of Jawaharnagar police station, P. Bikshapathi Rao, and others went to the said government plot to provide protection as authorities were demolishing the illegal structure. But Poonam and Nihal locked themselves inside and pretended to immolate themselves.

When inspector Rao rushed to save them, the two men then threw turpentine on him and set him on fire. Rao and another constable received severe burn injuries. The former is still undergoing treatment for the same. Earlier, too, Poonam and Nihal had attacked revenue officials and the cops with chilli powder.

The Rachakonda police, on Friday, said the two men are indulging in organized "land grabbing" and attacking government officials and thereby posing a threat to public order. The Rachakonda commissioner of police, Mahesh M. Bhagwat, invoked the PD Act to detain the duo.

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