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Jantar Mantar ‘hate speech’: Hindu Raksha Dal chief surrenders before Delhi Police

DCP (New Delhi district) Deepak Yadav confirmed his arrest. Hundreds of Chaudhary’s supporters accompanied him to the Mandir Marg police station Tuesday.

Delhi Police rounding up protesters demonstrating Tuesday against the slogans raised at Jantar Mantar. (Express photo by Abhinav Saha)

Delhi Police have arrested Hindu Raksha Dal chief Pinki Chaudhary after he surrendered Tuesday, in connection with the inflammatory and anti-Muslim slogans raised at Jantar Mantar earlier this month.

DCP (New Delhi district) Deepak Yadav confirmed his arrest. Hundreds of Chaudhary’s supporters accompanied him to the Mandir Marg police station Tuesday.

Police said Chaudhary, who had been evading arrest for several days, disclosed during questioning that he was associated with the Hindu Shakti Vahini where he claimed to have met former Delhi BJP spokesperson and Supreme Court lawyer Ashwini Upadhyay.

Police have so far arrested nine people in the case including Upadhyay, who was granted bail by a Delhi court on August 12. Apart from Upadhyay and Chaudhary, police have arrested Uttam Malik, Preet Singh, Deepak Singh, Deepak Kumar, Vinod Sharma, Vinit Bajpai and Sushil Tiwari.

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On Sunday, a video had surfaced online wherein Chaudhary, alias Bhupinder Tomar, was heard denying all allegations against him. In the video, he also said he would surrender Tuesday.

In the video, Chaudhary said, “I am still firm on my point. Neither I nor any worker of my organisation did anything wrong at Jantar Mantar. I respect the court and will cooperate with the police. I never ran away from arrest. It is the right of every person to go to court and I did the same. All the allegations against me are false and baseless. I have devoted my life towards Hinduism and Hindutva. As long as I have breath, I will continue to work for my religion.”

While a court had granted anticipatory bail to Chaudhary earlier, the Delhi High Court on Friday refused to grant him interim protection from arrest.

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Last year, Chaudhary had claimed he was responsible for the violence in JNU in January 2020 and confessed to his “involvement” on social media.

Police during investigation found that he formed the Hindu Raksha Dal in 2013 and it has more than 1.5 lakh registered members till date.

“Chaudhary is into property dealing. He was also arrested in 2014 after his group had vandalised the Aam Aadmi Party’s Kaushambi office,” an officer said.

First published on: 31-08-2021 at 04:54:03 pm
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