18/02/2019 3:37 PM IST

Bengal BJP Leader Arrested For Staging Daughter's Abduction

Implicated in several criminal cases, police say Batabyal plotted his daughter’s abduction to keep them off his back.

Hindustan Times via Getty Images

A Bengal BJP leader has been arrested for staging the abduction of his daughter while attempting to divert police’s attention from cases against him, reports said.

BJP leader Suprabhat Batabyal’s daughter Prathama was allegedly abducted at gunpoint from her home in Birbhum district’s Labhpur on Thursday, the Hindustan Times reported.

Batabyal, who was earlier a member of the CPM, had switched to the BJP from the Trinamool Congress five months ago, theTimes of Indiareported.

Implicated in several criminal cases, police say Batabyal plotted his daughter’s abduction to put the police under pressure and keep them off his back.

“The police had been looking out for Batabyal for quite some time in connection with a case against him. Based on information gathered so far by interrogating the arrested persons and questioning the woman, we believe the abduction was staged to put pressure on the police to stop looking for him,” Tanmay Sarkar, Birbhum’s additional superintendent of police, told HT.

Sarkar said Prathama was rescued from Malda district.

Police have arrested Batabyal and two of his associates who planned the attack with him and carried it out.

According to Times of India, Prathama’s family said they had not been informed of her rescue and came to know of it through media reports.

Her abduction had created tension in the district as protesters blocked the Suri-Katwa road for three days. 

Following Prathama’s abduction, Batabyal’s supporters had on Saturday chased TMC MLA Manirul Islam and gheraoed Labhpur police station where he took taken shelter.

TMC’s Birbhum district committee president Anubrata Mondal has alleged Islam was complicit in the abduction and had been named by Prathama for his involvement in the planning.