March 2, 2012 12:54:48 am
In a complete turnaround,the police on Thursday claimed journalist Chandrika Rai and his family members were killed by their driver,Ramesh Yadav,31,who has been arrested. This comes days after the police alleged that Rai was involved in the abduction of a government officials son and was killed by his accomplices following differences over the ransom.
Rai,43,his wife and two children were found dead in his office-cum-residence in Umaria town on the intervening night of February 17-18.
Last week,police had claimed that Rais neighbour,Amit Singh,and guard,Vidyaniwas Tiwari,had confessed to the murders and claimed that they were part of the abduction plot. But Additional DG (STF) Sanjay Chaudhary today said that the duo had misled the police by owning up to the murders to derail investigations. Singh and Tiwari were among six persons arrested for the kidnapping of PWD official Hemant Jharias son Anant.
Police said Rai had hired Yadav as his driver about six months back,on a monthly salary of Rs 2,000. They said Yadav killed the family as he needed money for his brothers wedding. Police said while Yadav has claimed that he committed the murders alone,they were keeping their investigations open. Yadav has been remanded in police custody for seven days.
According to the police,on the evening of February 17,Yadav told Rais wife that he had missed the bus to his village and would have to spend the night at their house.
After killing the four,Yadav reportedly remained in the house for nearly four hours. He is alleged to have taken Rs 22,000 in cash,ATM cards (with password slips),gold,silver and cellphones.
Police said they tracked Yadav because he withdrew money from an ATM in Shahdol on February 18. They recovered the stolen jewellery from the house of Yadavs brother-in-law.
Yadav,a college dropout,spent Rs 12,000 to hire a vehicle and book a band for his brothers wedding,said the police.
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