LAHORE – City police gunned down another criminal during an armed ‘encounter,’ staged in the Baghbanpura police precincts, sources said on Tuesday.

Police also claimed that the proclaimed offender, yet to be identified, was involved in several cases of armed robberies including one robbery-cum-murder. The dead body was removed to the morgue for autopsy.

Police officials again narrated the typical story, stating that they signaled two motorcyclists to stop at a picket set up in Daroghawala locality but the opened fire on them and fled away.

The police team started chasing the suspected motorcyclists and tried to intercept them near Sheller Chowk. The motorcyclists again opened straight fire on the police, which triggered an armed encounter between the police and the bandits.

“The crossfire continued for 15 minutes. When the fire was stopped one of the bandits was killed while his accomplice managed to escape from the scene,” a police official asserted. According to him, no policeman was hurt during the crossfire in which the robbers used automatic weapons. The police have removed the body to the morgue and are investigating.

However, sources revealed that the bandit was in the custody of Baghbanpura police for the last couple of days. “The police were interrogating the bandit to recover looted cash and valuables from his possession,” a source close to the SHO Baghbanpura police station said.

Later, the police also claimed that the accused had been involved in the robbery that took place at a leading departmental store a few weeks ago. According to police, the same robber had murdered one Muhammad Asif in the Salamatpura locality. The police also said that raids are underway to arrest the accomplice of the criminal and he would be nabbed very soon.

In Punjab, no less than 325 criminals were killed in alleged police encounters, staged in different parts of the province during the first 11 months of the year 2012. Most of the police shootouts took place in the provincial metropolis – Lahore, where the police gunned down more than 70 gangsters during the same period.