Hathras stampede: Bhole Baba’s aide, main accused Dev Prakash Madhukar arrested | Latest News India

    The main accused in the stampede at self-styled preacher Bhole Baba’s satsang in Hathras, which claimed 121 lives, Dev Prakash Madhukar was handed over to the police in Delhi on Friday, his counsel A P Singh said. A 1 lakh reward had been declared to nab him. Madhukar is undergoing treatment in Delhi currently.

    Police said no one was cleared yet and everyone mentioned during the investigation, including Bhole Baba, will be questioned if needed. (AP)

    Hathras SP Nipun Agarwal confirmed Madhukar’s arrest from Delhi adding that he was being brought to Hathras to be presented in the court.

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    Madhukar is known to be a close aide of Bhole Baba and was the key accused in the July 2 stampede.

    In a video message, Madhukar’s lawyer A P Singh said that his client had turned himself in while he was in Delhi for treatment. He said, “Today, we have surrendered Devprakash Madhukar, who was called the main organiser in the FIR in the Hathras case, after calling the police, the SIT and the STF in Delhi since he was undergoing treatment here.”

    “We had promised we would not apply for anticipatory bail since we did no wrong. What is our crime? He is an engineer and a heart patient. Doctors said his condition is stable now and so we surrendered today to join the probe,” he added.

    On Friday, Rahul Gandhi, the Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha, visited Hathras and met with the families of the stampede victims. He said the families told him that there were not enough police arrangements for the religious event, which caused the stampede.

    On Thursday, the Hathras police arrested six people from the satsang’s organising committee, including two women volunteers. These arrests happened a day after chief minister Yogi Adityanath visited Hathras.

    Police said no one was cleared yet and everyone mentioned during the investigation, including Bhole Baba, will be questioned if needed.

    “Six, including two women sevadars (volunteers) from the organising committee, have been arrested and a search is on for the main accused in (connection with the) FIR lodged. The incharge of the Samagam (satsang) Dev Prakash Madhukar (Engineer), in whose name permission was sought for the satsang, is absconding after being named in FIR by Hathras police. A reward of 1 lakh has been declared on his arrest and NBW (non-bailable warrant) issued. Teams are searching for him,” inspector general of police, Aligarh range, Shalabh Mathur said.

    The six people arrested on Thursday by Sikandra Rau police in Hathras are Ram Ladete (50) from Mainpuri, Upendra Singh Yadav (62) from Firozabad, Megh Singh (61) from Hathras, Manju Yadav (30) from Hathras, Mukesh Kumar (38) from Hathras, and Manju Devi (40) from Hathras.

    “On interrogation, it was learnt that these arrested are members of organising committee and work as sevadars (volunteers) and were involved in gathering of crowd, collection of donations, barricading, crowd management, electricity arrangements at venue, parking of vehicles and cleanliness. They were given uniform by organisers. These sevadar gave out that they did not allow police and administration to have photo and video of event and even misbehaved when questioned,” said Mathur.

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