New Delhi: A chemist on Friday shot a brave woman drug inspector and later committed suicide at Punjab's Kharar, just 17 km from Chandigarh. In what seems to be a revenge killing, he shouted "Happy Holi" while shooting her in front of her six-year-old niece.

The accused, 50-year-old Balwinder Singh, lived in Morinda and owned a chemist shop.

The police said the victim Dr Neha Shoree, 38, had been working as an inspector in Zonal Licensing Authority of Food and Drug Administration. She had cancelled the licence of Balwinder's shop in 2009. She was also supposed to depose against Singh in a local court where a case had been filed against him for selling illegal drugs.

"Balwinder wanted revenge as he was unable to run his business because its licence had been cancelled by Shoree," a police official said. After killing her, Singh killed himself with the same gun.

"Singh on Friday went to meet Neha and pumped four bullets at the woman and shouted 'Happy Holi'. After shooting her, he tried to flee the building. But laboratory attendant Suresh Kumar chased and caught him as he was about to start his motorbike. The assailant first tried to shoot at Suresh, but when he fell on the road after the lab assistant dragging the motorcycle back, he shot himself," the police said.

Both accused and the victim were taken to a private hospital where they were declared 'brought dead' by doctors.

The drug officer had been posted at the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Zonal Licensing Authority since 2016. The police said Shoree’s six-year-old niece was present in her office in Kharar during the shooting.

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Mohali SSP Harcharan Singh Bhullar told media that, “One bullet hit Neha on the temple and another on the chest. Balwinder tried to escape but people blocked him at the gate. Finding himself cornered, he took out his revolver and tried to scare them. Then, he shot himself in the chest and the head.”

“In September 2009, Neha was posted as a drug inspector in Ropar district when she raided Singh’s shop. During the raid, 35 types of tablets used by drug addicts were recovered and Singh could not produce any supporting document. That was when she cancelled his licence,” SSP Bhullar told media. 

Shoree is survived by a two-year-old daughter and husband Varun Monga, who works in a bank. Singh is survived by his wife, two daughters and a son.

With inputs from Agencies