A 70-year-old priest, his son and a woman follower were bludgeoned to death with bricks inside an ashram in Hardoi district’s Kuamau village allegedly by his disciple and aides. Police said they have arrested three persons, including the priest’s disciple, and added that they had killed them to usurp 48 bighas of land belonging to the priest.
“Heera Das (70), his son Netram (40) and follower Meeradas (65) were found murdered early Tuesday morning. The three of them were the only people at the ashram when the incident happened. We were informed by the village head about the incident,” said SHO of Tandiyawa police station Shiv Shankar Singh.
According to police, a disciple of the priest, Rakshpal Pasi, his brother-in-law Sanjay, a criminal identified as Rajiv and one more person were involved in the crime.
“Rajiv had planned the murder, while Rakshpal, Sanjay and the fourth person executed them. With the death of three, they intended to usurp 48 bighas of land belonging to the priest. Last month, Rakshpal had deceived the priest to sign his will. They then planned to kill them, sell the land and divide the money among them,” Superintendent of Police (Hardoi) Amit Kumar said.
According to police, Rakshpal has a criminal antecedent and was booked in an attempt to murder case earlier. Rakshpal was angry with the priest as the latter wanted to replace him after coming to know about his criminal background, said police.
“We found Rakshpal at the scene of the crime as he was the priest’s disciple. However, during questioning we found that his statement was different from the account given by his wife to the police. After questioning around 100 people, we solved the case,” added the SP.
Police are looking for the fourth accused.
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