The Firozabad police Monday arrested nine people, including a BSF jawan, and claimed to have solved the kidnapping case of RSS worker Maniram Pal (62). Pal was abducted from Agra on June 30 and gave the slip to his captors two days later. He is state organising secretary of Vanavasi Kalyan Ashram (VKA), which is affiliated to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).
All the nine arrested belong to Firozabad. The BSF jawan has been identified as Mukesh Yadav, who is posted in Tripura, and had come to Firozabad on leave.
Police said they arrested the alleged kidnappers from Moda crossing under Rasoolpur police circle and also recovered nine countrymade pistols, two cars and a motorcycle used in the crime.
Those arrested have reportedly confessed to their involvement in seven kidnappings, including that of Pal. They also told the police that they killed their associate Satish Kachi alias Changa, as Pal had escaped from his custody.
Firozabad SP Rakesh Singh said the accused said they were not aware that Pal was an RSS worker and had taken him to be a businesman.
The SP added that after he was kidnapped, Pal was taken to Kachiís house located at Firozabadís Naseerpur locality. The accused had reportedly asked Kachi to keep an eye on Pal and left. On July 2 morning, however, Pal managed to escape when Kachi was sleeping and reached the nearest Attaepur police outpost.
The SP said when the alleged kidnappers found out about Palís escape, they went to Kachiís house and killed him after beating him with sticks. They left the body in the house, which is located in a secluded place. On July 2, the police recovered Kachiís body.
Other arrested persons are Harkesh Ojha, Pradeep Kumar Yadav, Bunty Yadav, Vikas Yadav alias Chottu, Gaurav Agarwal, Arshad, Jaikesh alias Jackey and Raju.
On June 30, Pal had gone to Agra to take part in a two-day session of VKA organised at Saraswati Vidhya Mandir located in Kamla Nagar locality. The volunteers of VKA, around 250, were staying at the Saraswati Vidhya Mandir. Pal was reportedly kidnapped while he went on a morning walk at 4.30 am at Kamla Nagar. The matter came to light when another office-bearer of VKA in Kanpur received a call demanding a ransom of Rs 20 lakh for Palís release.