Rape-accused former minister Prajapati held

Rape-accused former minister Prajapati held

Almost a fortnight after being declared an absconder, rape-accused former Uttar Pradesh minister Gayatri Prasad Prajapati was arrested from the state capital on Wednesday.

According to the police, the senior SP leader was nabbed by the Special Task Force near a canal in Para area in the city on Wednesday morning.

“Prajapati had been hiding in Kolkata. He came from there to surrender. Acting on a tip-off, the police arrested him before he could reach the court,” a senior police official said.
Prajapati was later produced before a court, which sent him to 14-day judicial custody. The police said they would seek his custody for interrogation.

Lucknow SP Manzil Saini told reporters that Prajapati had been changing locations regularly, as a result of which the police found it difficult to trace him. “We arrested the accused on the basis of evidence and the statement of the victim. We will be filing the charge sheet in the matter soon,” she said. The SP leader, who lost the Assembly poll from the Amethi seat, is among the seven accused of gang-raping a woman. Prajapati has also been charged with attempting to rape the minor daughter of the victim. A case was registered against Prajapati on the direction of the Supreme Court after the victim approached the court.

The case had generated much heat during the elections, with the BJP and BSP accusing the then chief minister Akhilesh Yadav of shielding Prajapati.

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