Probe points murder plot finger at BJP MLA
Lucknow: A special investigation team has found Uttar Pradesh MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar guilty of hatching a conspiracy to kill the father of a girl the MLA and his brother had allegedly raped, sources said.
The SIT, led by additional director general of police Rajiv Krishan, accused Unnao police of protecting the BJP MLA and recommended further probe into the girl's gang rape and her father's murder.
The father died in police custody on Monday in Unnao. Sengar's younger brother Atul Singh Sengar was arrested on Tuesday on the charge of assaulting the father.
Around 11.30 on Wednesday night, the MLA reached the office of the senior superintendent of police and left soon after. "I was asked to be here. But the SSP is not here. The police can call me anytime. I am not running away," he told journalists, without explaining who asked him to be there and why.
A video and an audio clip that have reached the police and gone viral on social media suggest a plan was afoot to hush up the gang rape by trying to obtain a thumb impression of the rape victim's assaulted father and making a conciliatory call to her uncle.
ADG (law and order) Anand Kumar said the police knew about the clips and were conducting a probe.
Police sources said the video clip appears to have been filmed on April 3, when the father was allegedly beaten up with rifle butts and belts.
He had been ferried to the district hospital by the police before being taken into custody illegally for three days. Those who had beaten him had allegedly accompanied the police.
In the two-minute video, three persons are seen forcibly rubbing an ink pad on the semi-conscious father's thumb and taking its impressions on white paper sheets. The man, who appears to be lying on a hospital bed, tries to resist.
"Maybe the impression was being taken to prepare a false statement on behalf of the father saying he was not attacked," a police officer said.
"The audio clip appears to be of April 4 or later but before April 8, when the gang-rape victim and her mother tried to immolate themselves at the gate of chief minister Yogi Adityanath's residence in Lucknow," the officer said in Lucknow.
"There is no mention of the suicide bid in the four-minute conversation between someone whose voice resembles that of Kuldeep, and the uncle of the rape victim," the officer added.
The authoritative voice tells the other person in the clip to "forget whatever had happened and start afresh".
"Forget whatever happened in the past. You don't do anything against me and I am ready to make up," the commanding voice says.
The man on the other side asks: "Why did Atul do all these things? And why did he beat him?"
The imposing voice asks: "Why did you print pamphlets against me?"
The other man replies: "I didn't print any pamphlet. You can cross-check with anybody."
The authoritative voice gets angry and shouts: "Are you telling me to ask people? Do I need to ask anybody?" There is a stress on "me" and "I". Then he controls himself and says: "Forget whatever happened in the past. Let us begin afresh."
The girl had told the police and reporters after she was rescued by security guards at the chief minister's gate that her family members' lives were in danger and MLA Kuldeep wanted to kill her father.
"He, along with his brother and aides, raped me in June 2017 and then mounted pressure to withdraw the case. Then they attacked my father and sent him to jail with the help of the district police in a false case. They also prepared false documents to show that my father was a habitual offender," she had said a day before her father died of internal injuries at Unnao jail on April 9.
The rape victim alleged that she and her mother and uncle had been kept confined to a hotel in Unnao by the police from Tuesday morning to Wednesday morning.
"We didn't get anything to eat or drink for 24 hours. They refused to give us even water," she told journalists after being taken out of the hotel on Wednesday morning.
She also alleged that police were trying to pressure her and her family from pointing fingers at the MLA and cops.