Sarpanch, Charging Families For Release Of Kin, Arrested

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Srinagar: A sarpanch was arrested on Wednesday for allegedly cheating two families and taking over Rs 1 lakh from them for securing the release of their kin who were taken for questioning by police in connection with a militancy case in Anantnag district of Jammu and Kashmir, officials said.

A police official said two suspects from Kokernag area of the south Kashmir district were called for questioning regarding a militancy crime. While they were being questioned to establish their involvement or otherwise, their families approached one Nisar Ahamd Khan of Kadipora to secure their release, he said.

In the meanwhile, the official said, the two individuals were not found involved or having any knowledge of circumstances that resulted in the commission of the crime. Accordingly, they were released.

But it was known that their families had paid money to Khan who is a sarpanch of Gopalpora village, the official said. Khan had taken Rs 1,10,000 from the families promising the release of their kin, he added.

Khan had approached police and also sought appointment with a police officer for the same, but he was not allowed to meet the officer and instead conveyed on phone that the suspects will be sent home if not found involved, the official said.

Police have registered a case under section 420 of IPC against Khan and money paid to him has been recovered, he said, adding the sarpanch was arrested.

The money recovered will be handed over to families with due process and further investigation is going on, the official said.

He advised people to refrain from paying money to touts and unscrupulous elements and instead meet senior police officers in their respective areas for the redressal of their grievances.  (PTI)

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