A Jodhpur-based family living in Dewas had given her shelter.
Jaipur: Rajasthan anti-terrorist squad (ATS) has arrested Indira Bishnoi, the mastermind behind the murder of ANM Bhanwari Devi in Jodhpur. Two former Congress MLAs and 13 others are behind bars in connection with this murder case that rocked Rajasthan nearly six years ago.
Indira Bishnoi, the sister of former Congress MLA Malkhan Singh Bishnoi, had been on the run for the past six years. She was found living with a family on the banks of Narmada near Dewas in Madhya Pradesh. No cellphone or ATM cards were found in her possession. She was carrying a cash reward of Rs 5 lakh.
A family from Jodhpur that had moved to Dewas gave her shelter.
The ATS kept Indira under surveillance for nearly two months and confirmed her identity before making a move. Her appearance has completely changed over the past six years.
Senior police officials said Udaipur’s ATS branch got a tip-off about her whereabouts nearly two months ago.
Senior ATS officials constituted police teams to keep a watch on her.
Police teams were unable to identify her on the basis of her photo from six years ago.
“She was staying with a family from poor background. Despite having no disguises, the changes in her appearance were surprising. The family had shifted to Dewas nearly 50 years ago,” said a police officer.
But ATS nabbed her after confirming her identity.
Indira will be handed over to Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) that is investigating the case.
Bhanwari Devi – a midwife and nurse – was blackmailing Indira’s brother Malkhan Singh Bishnoi who was an MLA in the previous Congress government. Bhanwari had a daughter from Malkhan and she was demanding inheritance rights for the child. A DNA test proved Malkhan had fathered the child.
Indira had instigated Bhanwari Devi to prepare a sleaze CD showing her in compromising situation with Mahipal Maderna, the then cabinet minister. Indra wanted to dethrone Mahipal, so that her brother Malkhan could get a cabinet birth. However Bhanwari started blackmailing both Malkhan and Maderana.
Bhanwari Devi sudddenly went missing. After the local police failed to locate her, the case was handed over to the CBI. Her remains were found from a canal. CBI officials said that she was charred to death. Malkhan and Mahipal were arrested by the CBI along with several others in this connection.
Indira had hatched a conspiracy to kill Bhanwari Devi because the latter was blackmailing Mahipal.
Indira had been quizzed by the CBI, but she disappeared in December, 2011. A court had ordered attachment of her properties. The properties were put up for auction twice, but they didn’t find any takers. She had been declared an absconder by the court.
She had sought an anticipatory bail on the grounds of mental incompetence, but her application was turned down.
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