Days after former Union minister Swami Chinmayanand was arrested by the Uttar Pradesh Police, the Bharatiya Janata Party’s spokesperson in Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday claimed that the accused leader is no longer a member of the party. "Chinmayanand is not a member of the BJP,” Harish Srivastava, BJP UP spokesperson told newsnation.in over the phone.
When asked to tell the exact time since when he stopped being a BJP member, Srivastava said that he cannot tell the exact date. “I can’t tell you the exact time but he left the party way before this controversy erupted,” the BJP leader said. This is the first official comment made by any BJP leader.
Chinmayanand, who was arrested on Friday and sent to 14 days' judicial custody, was admitted to a Lucknow hospital on Monday, where he was tested for cardiac problems.
He has been booked under sections 354 D (stalking), 342 (wrongful confinement) and 506 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code.
The police had also arrested three other men for allegedly trying to extort money from the former Union minister. The student was also booked on the same charge.
Meanwhile, the law student – who accused Chinmayanand of rape – has been arrested on charges of extortion and sent to 14 days judicial custody, police said. She was arrested around 9.15 am from her home by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the Uttar Pradesh Police amid massive deployment of forces, sources said.
SIT chief Naveen Arora said the student was arrested after "enough" digital and forensic evidence were found and statements of people recorded.
"We have sufficient evidence that Rs 5 crore extortion money was demanded from Chinmayanand. Those arrested said they sent messages to Chinmayanand on directions of the girl in panic as they were not getting money and were upset," he told reporters here.
Anoop Trivedi, the student's counsel, said he has moved a bail application, which will be heard later in the day. A local court had on Tuesday admitted an interim bail plea filed by the student and fixed it for hearing on Thursday.
The Shahjahanpur locality where the student lives witnessed the heavy deployment of police personnel on Wednesday morning. Roads leading to her residence were blocked from both sides before policemen entered the house to arrest her, sources said.