BJP lawmaker Kuldeep Sengar arrested by CBI in Unnao rape case

Kuldeep Singh Sengar, who has been charged with raping a teenager, was questioned by CBI for 15 hours in Lucknow.

KANPUR: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in Lucknow late on Friday over allegations that he raped a teenager in Unnao last year.

Sengar's arrest came after he was questioned for 15 hours following his detention earlier in the day. A senior CBI official said the MLA for Bangarmau in Uttar Pradesh's Unnao district was taken from a house in Lucknow's Indira Nagar area to the agency's office in Hazratganj around 4am.

In a statement, the agency said it had lodged three separate first information reports in connection with the Unnao rape, and the death of the rape survivor's 55-year-old father, allegedly after he was assaulted by the MLA's brother. "The first FIR is related to allegations of rape on the MLA and a woman, the second is of the June 2017 event in which the teenager's family accused four people of kidnapping and raping her," it said.

The third case is related to the alleged attack on the teenager's father on April 3 by the MLA's brother, who was charged him with voluntarily causing hurt after a brawl.The father died on April 9 during treatment while in judicial custody.

As criticism mounted against the state government over the case, chief minister Yogi Adityanath said in Kanpur that his government had not deviated from its zero-tolerance policy on crime and will firmly deal with criminals, no matter how influential they might be.

"The law is one for all, and the punishment for a crime too will be the same for all, irrespective of who the offender is," he said.

His comments came just hours after the Allahabad high court slammed the state government and asked the CBI to arrest Sengar.

"We are unable to accept the contention of the AG (advocate general) that the accused in the circumstances cannot be arrested. Arrest of the accused is necessarily required to safeguard the majesty of law and the dignity of the prosecutrix," the court said.

"The disturbing feature of the case is that the law and order machinery and government officials were directly in league and under the influence of Kuldeep Singh," it said.

The CBI swung into action on Thursday after the state government's recommended a federal probe. The court will monitor the investigation and asked the CBI to file a status report on May 2, which is the next date of hearing.


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