A Mumbai resident, who had in August lodged a police complaint about being bullied by an auto rickshaw driver who accused him of using a bag made of cow hide, has been arrested.
Barun Kashyap, a creative producer, had posted about the alleged incident on his Facebook account.
But Aam Aadmi Party member and activist Preeti Sharma Menon has alleged that Kashyap was arrested on trumped up charges and accused controversial ‘encounter specialist’ and assistant police inspector Daya Nayak of having a hand in the arrest.
Kashyap was arrested after an FIR was registered against him for allegedly lodging a false complaint and creating enmity between two groups.
DCP Ashok Dudhe, Mumbai police spokesperson, confirmed the arrest and said that Kashyap would soon be produced in a magistrate’s court. Soon after his arrest, Menon alleged in a statement that Nayak had threatened Kashyap to change his statement and the FIR against him was false.
“Daya Nayak has filed a false case against Barun Kashyap and arrested him. The 24-year-old was threatened by Daya Nayak, assistant commissioner of police and senior police inspector of Amboli police station on September 30 to change is original statement made on 20 August 2016. He was threatened, he feared for his life and so he signed on anything that Daya Nayak said,” Menon claimed in a statement to the media.
Menon said that Kashyap had gone to the police station on October 1 after hearing from the media that there was a case filed against him, but Nayak had assured him that there was no case. According to Menon, Kashyap then approached her for help. On Monday, she took him to advocates Mihir Desai and Vijay Hiremath who, she claimed, agreed to take up his case.
She said Kashyap had come to see her again on Tuesday morning and she had sent him in her car to the lawyers when the police intercepted them.
“The police swept down on them in Chembur, and arrested both Barun and my driver,” she alleged in the statement.
She said she feared for Kashyap’s life.
“Daya Nayak has framed him just to get into the good book of his superiors and I demand strong action against him and the court should take cognizance of this,” Menon said.
Nayak did not respond to HT’s calls or messages for his version of the developments.
Arun Chavan, assistant commissioner of police of DN Nagar division under whom the probe was initiated said, “We were trying to locate Barun Kashyap, and found his location at Chembur. He was sitting in a car. So we inquired with the driver who told us that Preeti Sharma Menon had asked him to drop Barun. We took both to the police station. Barun was arrested, while the driver was allowed to go after we recorded his statement.”
On the allegations against Daya Nayak, Chavan said, “He (Kashyap) is the accused, and he can make any kind of allegations.”
Kashyap had registered a non cognizable complaint with Amboli police alleging that the driver stopped the auto rickshaw mid way and got two more men who threatened him for using a cow hide bag. After the post went viral senior police officers took cognizance of it and after taking permission from a magistrate’s court started probing the case.
Nayak has been a controversial police officer who earned his spurs by eliminating many of Mumbai’s underworld members in encounters.
He was arrested in 2006 after a Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) court ordered the anti-corruption bureau (ACB) to probe his unaccounted wealth.
In 2012, after being out of the force for nearly six-and-a-half years, Nayak was reinstated and was posted with the West control room.
Nayak was suspended in July 2015, after he failed to report to Nagpur where he had been transferred in 2014
In January 2016, he was reinstated again