The local Crime Branch (LCB) officials of Vadodara rural police arrested suspended BJP leader Jayesh Patel from Asodar crossroad near Anand late on Tuesday. Patel, president and trustee of Parul University, has been absconding since he was booked for alleged rape of a nursing student. He was arrested around 10 .30 pm when he was returning from Rajasthan in his car.
According to the police, he was returning to Vadodara. The police, which had received a tip-off, set up a checkpost since Tuesday evening. A police officer said Patel will first be taken to SSG hospital in Vadodara for a medical examination before he is questioned.
Patel was booked for the alleged rape on Saturday.
Earlier in the day, Vadodara Range IG G S Malik refuted allegations that the police were “going slow” in the case. Stating that the police were “doing good work”, he said, “Our team has worked hard and arrested one of the accused, Bhavna Chauhan, in a short time. We have also taken statements of other girls under section 164 of the IPC, which is very crucial in such a high-profile case.”
A video, purportedly filmed by the victim’s family, also made the rounds. In the video, Patel is seen “seeking pardon” from the victim’s parents and activists accompanying them. He is seen telling the family of the victim, “I will have to commit suicide if a case is filed. I am asking for forgiveness.”
Malik said, “We have to check the video for its genuineness. At this stage, we cannot say who filmed it or for what purpose.”
Meanwhile, hostel rector Bhavna Chauhan, who was remanded in police custody for five days, has told the police that she was “acting on the instruction” of Patel. A police officer said Bhavna has confessed that Patel would often signal to her if he “found any female student to be beautiful”.