Sixty-five-year-old Chheda Singh, who had a bounty of Rs 50,000 on his head was reportedly living at an Ashram near Janki Kund in Madhya Pradesh’s Chitrakoot. Apparently, he disguised himself as a Baba, working as Sevadar at the Ashram for the last two decades. He reportedly arrived in UP for medical treatment, when he was caught by the Police.
According to reports, the police recovered fake ID proofs and other details from the absconding dacoit. Singh, who is wanted in over 20 cases of murder, dacoity, abduction, and extortion, was living under a fake ID in the name of Brajmohan Das, a resident of Raghuraj Nagar in Chitrakoot of Satna district. He was declared absconding by a court in UP. Singh was among the most active members of Lalram Gang, whose gang leader brothers, Lalram and Sitaram Singh, had got his Phoolan Devi kidnapped in 1980.
In a key development, one of ‘Bandit Queen’ Phoolan Devi’s alleged kidnappers has now been arrested. Chheda Singh, a dacoit believed to have a part in Devi’s kidnapping in 1980, has been arrested after a search spanning over two decades. Chheda Singh was arrested from his native Bhasaun village in Uttar Pradesh’s Auraiya after 20 years of the police investigation.
Bandit Queen Phoolan Devi and her gang members were accused of killing 20 people belonging to the Thakur community at Behmai village in Kanpur Dehat on February 14, 1981. Phoolan Devi had reportedly stormed into Behmai to avenge her alleged rape by two other bandits, both belonging to the upper caste Thakurs. When they were not found, she shot 20 people belonging to the same community and then surrendered to police in 1983.
Later, she spent 11 years in Gwalior and Jabalpur jails and was released without facing trial in 1994. However, in 1996, Mulayam Singh Yadav’s UP government withdrew all cases against her. She then went on to become an MP from Mirzapur. She was shot dead outside her Delhi home on July 25, 2001. Recently, a Kanpur court adjourned the Behmai Massacre case hearing as the case diary had gone missing.
Phoolan Devi, then a Samajwadi Party lawmaker from Mirzapur constituency in UP, was shot dead from a close range by three masked gunmen in front of her Ashoka Road residence in New Delhi’s VIP area when she returned home for lunch after attending the Lok Sabha session on July 25, 2001.
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