The special investigating team (SIT) of Haryana police has arrested a Karnal based lawyer Harish Arya — the alleged mastermind in the extortion racket in the name of settling rape accusations — late on Saturday.
It was the second arrest after another local lawyer Jaipal Singh was arrested by the SIT on June 5 from here. Another lawyer Deepak Mohan and two of their alleged women accomplices are still out of the reach of the Haryana Police.
Arya, who also runs a voluntary organisation ‘Fight for Justice Club of India’, and claims to work for the oppressed class, especially for the victims of crime against women, was arrested from a furniture shop at Prem Nagar locality of the town.
As Arya was evading arrest for more than a month, police sources said that the person from whose shop he was arrested could also be questioned for sheltering an absconding accused.
The accused was taken to Kurukshetra last night for questioning by SIT head and deputy superintendent of police, Kurukshetra, Nupur Bishnoi, and his medical examination was conducted at the government hospital there.
Arya was regularly sending emails to the Press claiming his innocence, socialising with journalists and others and was active on the Facebook.
A rape case was registered at the city police station in Karnal on April 14 following the complaint of a 22-year-old woman from Ambala. She charged a local jeweller, Ramesh Kumar, with rape, but later retracted from her statement.
While Ramesh was granted bail, the case is still pending in a local court.
Later, the woman appeared before the then additional director general of police (crime against women) KK Mishra and alleged that she was forced to withdraw her accusations by the lawyers for money.
According to police, the alleged rape victim is a kidney patient from a poor Dalit family. She was approached by the gang and was introduced to Ramesh as a job aspirant.