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Maya orders party leaders' arrest in arson case

March 04, 2011 02:05 IST

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati on Thursday ordered the arrest of two of her own Bahujan Samaj Party leaders for their involvement in arson at the residence of state Congress president Rita Bahuguna Joshi in Lucknow in July 2009.

The Crime Branch of the Criminal Investigation Department, which was entrusted with the probe into the sensational case, took BSP MLA Jitendra Singh 'Babloo' and UP State Ganna Sansthan chairman Intezar Abdi 'Bobby' into custody late Thursday night.

Babloo was rewarded with the rank of a minister shortly after he shot into infamy for his involvement in the arson.

Disclosing the arrest in Lucknow, Special Director General of Police Brij Lal said, 'both ruling

party leaders have been charged for arson, rioting, assault and attempt to murder.'

He said, "While the CID were yet to complete their investigation in the case, the arrest followed availability of vital clues with the investigating agency."

He claimed, "This government believes in the rule of law and the chief minister's clear brief is not to spare law offenders, however high and mighty they may be."

A bunch of vandals, led by BSP MLA Jitendra Singh Babloo, in full public view ransacked the entire house of the UPCC president on July 16, 2009, at a stone's throw from the chief minister's office, after her alleged remarks against Mayawati. Having set ablaze four cars parked in the compound, they nearly set the whole house on fire.

Sharat Pradhan in Lucknow