ON THE RUN for over two months after he was booked for rape, the Imam of Jama Masjid in Bijnor, Maulana Anwarul Haq, surrendered before a local court in the district Monday. The rape case was lodged against Anwarul and his associate Khurram at Mahila police station on August 25. The police had attached the properties of Anwarul and Khurram in October on court’s direction. Khurram was arrested last month from Bijnor while Anwarul remained absconding. The police had also announced a reward of Rs 5,000 on his head.
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“Anwarul surrendered before a local court on Monday. Court has sent him to 14-days judicial custody,” said investigating officer of the case, Manju Singh, who is also the SHO of Mahila police station. According to police, Anwarul had allegedly raped a woman on pretext of “rescuing her from evil spirits” in a hotel room in Haridwar in August after he had taken the victim and her husband there saying some rituals needed to be performed at the Kaliyar Sharif dargah. He had threatened the woman with dire consequences if she informed her husband.
Later, on returning from Haridwar, Anwarul reached the couple’s house on August 19 when the woman was alone. Khurram, who had accompanied Anwarul, stood guard outside the house. While Anwarul was inside, the woman’s husband arrived and allegedly caught the cleric in a compromising position with his wife. The cleric was then beaten up by locals and a few had even made some video clips. The police, however, was not informed then.
To put pressure on the man and others to hand him over the video clippings and photographs, Anwarul got an FIR lodged against the woman’s husband and four others on August 23 at Nazibabad police station, alleging that they had misbehaved with his (cleric’s) wife and also snatched her jewellery. Following this, police picked up one of the named persons who then told the police about the happenings. Later, police contacted the victim and her husband and the rape case was lodged against Anwarul and Khurram.
The cleric was named in two other cases too. One case was filed against him on August 26 at the City Kotwali police station for allegedly making derogatory remark against the Superintendent of Police. The other case too was filed on the same date against him for allegedly abusing and thrashing a businessman .