Monday, March 27, 2023

Yogendra Sao’s links with human traffickers under scanner


Ranchi: State police and CID are probing into the suspected links of former state agriculture minister and Congress MLA Yogendra Sao with human traffickers, sources said.

The basis of investigators’ suspicion is the fact that Sao was arrested from the New Delhi residence of one Pannalal Sao, accused of several cases related to human trafficking in various police stations, sources said.
Meanwhile the former minister has been ordered by the court of the sub divisional magistrate of Hazaribagh to be produced in the court physically tomorrow by 2 pm, sources said.

Sources said Sao, who resigned from his Cabinet post after his alleged links with Naxalites were exposed by police, reportedly has close relations with Pannalal. The probe team investigating Sao’s alleged Naxalite links will also be looking into the links of the former minister with human traffickers.

Significantly, most Congress leaders of the state have not come to the fore to support Sao in his hour of crisis. Only former Union minister Subodhkant Sahay had sought to show solidarity with Sao in this case. State Congress president Sukhdev Bhagat has already made it clear that the law will take its own course in the case. He also said that a fair probe should be conducted in the case.

Several Congress leaders including the Rajya Sabha MP Pradip Balmuchu and Abha Sinha have said that the party had suffered damage due to the taint on Sao.

While Congress leaders remained absent, the ex-minister’s son Sumit Sao was seen in Hazaribagh court in connection with his father’s hearing in the case.

It may be mentioned here that Sao is presently under treatment at Rajendra Institute of Medical Science (RIMS). Sao had complained of pain in his ears and stomach on being brought to Ranchi airport by the CID team all the way from New Delhi a few days back. Sao was handed over to the CID team on a three day transit demand by the court.

He is accused of having founded and funded Jharkhand Tigers Group, an ultra-Leftist and outlawed outfit. A Hazaribagh court had issued an arrest warrant against Sao on 14th September last, two days after the ex-minister resigned from his post.

Police, during interrogation of Rajkumar Gupta, alleged kingpin of Jharkhand Tigers Group, had told interrogators after his arrest that Sao had helped the outfit and that he had also provided the outfit funds and arms, sources said.

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