An 83-year-old man was arrested for allegedly being on the run for over 50 years in a case of attempt of murder. The man, however, was released following protest by locals as the police failed to produce any document related to the case in Pratapgarh district on Saturday.
A police team from Pratapgarh Crime Branch had picked up Mohammad Yunus from his house following raids at Hariharpur village on the intervening night of Friday and Saturday. As he was brought to the Mandhata police station, a large number of villagers gathered outside protesting against the arrest.
When Yunus’ relatives and the villagers asked police to produce the arrest warrant and documents related to the case, the officers failed to do so. Zila panchayat member Mohammad Arif then approached Pratapgarh SP Madhav Prasad Verma and lodged a complaint. Later, the SP ordered that Yunus be released.
“When the police cannot crack recent cases, how come they followed a case as old as 50 years. Arrests should be made after gathering evidence, not just over some tip-off,” said Arif.
When contacted, Crime Branch Inspector Riyaz Ahmed, who arrested Yunus, claimed he had come to know that he was wanted in a case through a complaint submitted at additional SP’s office a few weeks ago.
“Someone filed a written complaint against Mohammad Yunus alleging that he has been absconding in an attempt to murder case of 1967. I learnt about the application and traced the address of the accused. I managed to catch hold of him but the police station failed to produce any document related to the case. Thus, we had to release him,” he added.
“Two other accused in the attempt to murder case of 1967 have already been sentenced by court. Only Yunus was absconding,” said Ahmed.
He claimed Yunus has a case of attempt to murder lodged against him at Mandhata police station since 1967. “A crime case was also registered against him at Jethwara police station in 1979,” he added.
SP Madhav Prasad Verma said: “Though the police could not find documents related to the case at the police station, there must be some evidence against the accused in the court. We will look for those documents on Monday.”