Sidhu Moose Wala, India rapper and politician, gunned down

NEW DELHI: Famous Punjabi-language rapper and politician Sidhu Moose Wala was shot dead by unknown assailants on Sunday in Jawaharke village of Mansa district in the northwestern state of Punjab, Indian media reported.

The Wire said the incident occurred a day after the local police curtailed the security of 424 people, including Moose Wala.

Hindustan Times said he, along with two others, was four kilometres away from his home in Moosa village when unidentified individuals opened fire at his vehicle.

Police say Moose Wala, 28, had left his home at about 4:30 pm local time on Sunday, driving in a jeep vehicle along with two other people, CBC reported.

At about 5:30 pm, police say the occupants of three vehicles — one behind Moose Wala’s vehicle and two alongside — fired into the vehicle when they were in the Jawaharke village, within Mansa district.

The Hindustan Times report quoted the police as saying that Moose Wala was hit by multiple bullets and taken to Civil Hospital in Mansa where he died. The condition of the other two is said to be critical.

Meanwhile, The Wire reported that his fan-following was in the “millions”, extending all the way to countries such as the United States, United Kingdom, Canada and Australia.

“He was famous for his rap songs with hard-hitting, sarcastic content which asked questions of society, politicians, religious leaders, rival singers and spoke of the country’s problems,” the report added.

Indian politicians condemned the incident and extended condolences.

“I am shocked and deeply saddened by the gruesome murder of Siddhu Moosewala. Nobody involved will be spared,” said Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann.

INC chief Rahul Gandhi said he was “deeply shocked and saddened” by the murder.

“We stand united & undeterred, at this time of extreme grief,” the Indian National Congress (INC) said.

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