The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Cover-up cry in poet murder

Lucknow, May 12: Allegations linking a member of the Mayavati ministry to Madhumita Shukla seem to have slowed down investigations into the poet’s murder, provoking an Opposition charge of a cover-up.

Police have not yet sent DNA prints of the foetus extracted from Shukla’s body to a forensic laboratory, though samples had been collected on Saturday following allegations by the deceased’s sister about Uttar Pradesh minister Amarmani Tripathi having a relationship with the poet. The minister’s wife had threatened to eliminate the poet, her sister had alleged.

Investigations into the murder might now be shifted from the civil police to crime the branch, said sources.

The police claimed to have located Satya Prakash Tripathi, one of the two young men who had visited Shukla at her residence in Paper Mill Colony before her murder on Friday. However, no arrest was made till Monday evening.

“The investigation is on, but an arrest will take place only after we have reached any conclusion,” said the deputy inspector-general of police (Lucknow range) A.K. Dwivedi.

The police official failed to explain the delay in sending the DNA samples of the foetus to a forensic laboratory. “It has been removed and is being kept at Chatrapati Sahuji Maharaj Medical University in Lucknow. Somehow, it could not be sent for the DNA test so far,” he said.

The DNA test assumes importance in view of the allegations by Shukla’s sister, Nidhi, about her relationship with the minister and her claim that the two “planned to marry”.

The poet’s sister had accused Tripathi’s wife, Madhubani, of masterminding the murder and claimed that “she had repeatedly threatened to eliminate my sister”.

Samajwadi Party leader Mulayam Singh Yadav said at a rally today that Mayavati’s government is “propped up by criminals and, in turn, protects the criminals”.

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