Narayan Sai, son of Asaram, had reportedly taken shelter in Ludhiana to evade his arrest. Following a tip-off the officials of the Crime Branch of Delhi were in Ludhiana for the past two days and were tracing Sai from the mobile phone he was using.
The last location of the phone was traced to Alamgir village on Malerkotla Road, where he had taken shelter in a farm house of a local businessman. When Sai got wind of this, he tried to evade the arrest.
Sai had earlier hidden in a house at Model Town in Delhi and Preet Nagar in Shimlapuri area here. Around 20 officials of the Crime Branch of Delhi Police, including inspector Gurmeet Singh, sub-inspectors Vijay Kumar, Sukhjinder Singh and Harjinder Choudhary, were staying at hotels near Clock Tower and were tracing Sai. The police did not raid his hideout, apprehending trouble by his followers.
On Tuesday, the team summoned more force from Delhi and raided the farm house at Alamgir.
Sai, along with his accomplices, tried to escape in an SUV, but the Delhi Police gave him a chase and arrested him near Pipli in Haryana. Sai had trimmed his beard and hair and had disguised as a Sikh sporting a turban when the police arrested him.
The Delhi police also rounded up the businessman for questioning. When HT tried to approach the family of the businessman on Wednesday, no one from the family was ready to speak. The maid said the owner of the house was at his office.
Punjab Police unaware
The intelligence wing of Punjab Police was aware of neither Sai's movement nor of the action by the Delhi Police in Ludhiana. The Delhi Police personnel stayed in a densely populated area and moved around in the city in four cars with fictitious numbers. Till Tuesday night, the Ludhiana police were unaware of the action.
Sai repeatedly visited Ludhiana
Sai repeatedly visited Ludhiana to take shelter. He had also stayed at the Asaram ashram in Sahnewal in October. He was also spotted in Ludhiana in a car. When a senior journalist visited the ashram on October 17, his followers thrashed him and snatched the keys of his car besides other belongings. He had filed a complaint with the police, but to no avail.
Police commissioner Nirmal Singh Dhillon said the Ludhiana police were not aware of the action as the Delhi police did not inform them.