Police on Monday regretted killing industrialist’s son, Bunty Shah, in a botched up operation in Nairobi on Sunday. Shah who is the son of Bobmil industries owner was killed at his residence in Westlands during an anti-terror operation.
“We regret the unfortunate death and wish to assure the public that a thorough inquiry into the circumstances of the shooting has been instituted,” said police spokesman George Kinoti. Kinoti said on October 21, at about 4 pm, information obtained by the police indicated that some unidentified individuals were plotting to stage multiple attacks in Nairobi using weapons that were kept in unoccupied house along Peponi Road, Nairobi.
“Having evaluated the information, a quick check confirmed that there was indeed such a building along that physical address that was adjacent to other properties.” In view of the real and imminent danger to public security, a further and thorough check at that unoccupied property became necessary and had to be done immediately, he added.
“Unfortunately, during the operation, officers involved came under fire from a balcony of a building close by. The unidentified person continued firing even after being cautioned, forcing the officers to respond. In the ensuing exchange of fire, the Individual, who has been identified as Bunty Shah, was fatally injured.”
He added, while police always endeavor to verify information obtained from members of the public before responding, in this instance and in the view of the magnitude of the threat, and the fact that the building was unoccupied, there was no room for further delay.
Again, Bunty was shot while standing at the window of his bedroom where he had shot twice to the air to scare the officers who broke into the compound.
His uncle Kiru Shah said Bunty was at home with his wife, his six-month old boy, his mother and grandmother. According to police, he is a licensed gun holder. Without knowledge of who the invaders were, he stood at window of the first floor of his bedroom and fired twice to the air.
“He had heard the commotion and noise in the compound and so he woke up and stood at the window and shot twice in the air perhaps to scare the intruders,” said Kiru.
It was then that one of the officers fired a single shot and hit Bunty in the chest killing him. The shooting marked the end of the operation there as the officers jumped back to their cars and sped off. This was after the deceased’s wife had screamed for help, called an ambulance and walked down to where the officers were. The officers went and confirmed the shooting before leaving.
Bunty was rushed to the nearby MP Shah hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. Police from Parklands had earlier arrived at the scene before the shooting after guards raised alarm. According to the guards, when the team from Parklands arrived there, they found the 12 masked men armed with rifles who informed them they were police officers on special operation.
“They left the place after they were informed those inside were police officers on a special operation,” said a guard on duty who asked not to be named.
Reports later emerged the officers were on anti-terror mission to arrest a suspect linked to last week’s bombing in Mogadishu, Somalia that claimed more than 300 lives.