Unnao rape case: CBI detains MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar after Yogi government failed to do soUnnao rape case: CBI detains MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar after Yogi government failed to do so.
The CBI on Friday morning finally picked up BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar from his Lucknow residence for questioning after he had cocked a snook at CM Yogi Adityanath’s advice to surrender before UP police and cease the BJPs continuing political embarrassment.
He has been brought to the CBI office in Lucknow at 4:30 AM on Friday and is likely to be formally arrested now. CBI took over the Unnao rape case from the UP Police on Thursday night within hours of the papers reaching Delhi from Lucknow as the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) is said to have intervened to hasten the formalities and the DoPT which works under the Prime Minister immediately issued a notification in this regard. The Central BJP leadership on Wednesday had advised the UP government to transfer the case to the CBI. Earlier on Thursday, the Adityanath government had lodged a case of rape against Sengar but decided against arresting him and threw the ball in CBIs court which it said would take a call on the matter.
With nearly a dozen Thakur MLAs of the BJP ganging up behind Sengar, the Yogi government seemed wary of acting against Sengar ahead of elections to the UP Legislative Council later this month where BJP needs MLA votes to get its nine MLCs elected. The UP government told the Allahabad High Court on Thursday that there was no adequate evidence in the rape case to arrest the MLA after the court pointedly asked if the police will arrest Sengar or not after booking him for rape as well as under the stringent POCSO Act. Earlier in the day, UP’s Principal Secretary (Home) Arvind Kumar and DGP O.P. Singh in a press conference repeatedly referred to Sengar as ‘Mananiye Vidhayak Ji’ (respected MLA) and said the rape case as well as that of the custodial death of the victim’s father was being referred to CBI which will now take the call to arrest the MLA if it gets adequate evidence. The Samajwadi Party said Yogi Adityanath had lost all moral right to be the CM.
The decision of the Yogi Adityanath government to not arrest the MLA despite all-out condemnation was also because the state BJP strongly believes that the rape charge against him is a concocted one and the victim’s family has clear links with the Samajwadi Party, at least two senior BJP leaders in the state have told ET. Importantly, the MLA has so far not been made an accused in the case of assault on the victim’s father, which has attracted murder charges now. “It is a very important point that the victim did not name the MLA in her statement before a magistrate in the rape matter,” a senior BJP leader said. Principal Secretary Arvind Kumar pointed to the same, saying “the victim not naming the MLA before court was a discrepancy though the victim now says she did not do so as she was scared.” DGP O.P, Singh said a FIR against the MLA was done “strictly as per the allegation of the victim which do not stand proved so far” and so the MLA deserved respect.
The SIT probe has shown that while the victim’s family lodged a complaint on June 12 last year about the girl disappearing on June 11 and an FIR was lodged against two persons, it was only on August 17 last year that the victim gave an application saying the MLA had raped her onJune 4 that year. “Because her Section 164 statement before a Magistrate earlier had no mention of the June 4 incident or of the MLA, no action was taken on her application. She later approached the court,” Arvind Kumar said. The BJP is highlighting another case as well where the same victim had lodged a rape case against another person, who was found to be innocent.