Balaghat, Madhya Pradesh: A journalist was allegedly killed by the mining mafia in Madhya Pradesh after he refused to withdraw a case he had filed in court. According to the police, Sandeep Kothari was kidnapped on Friday, choked to death and then set on fire.
The burnt body of Mr Kothari was found in the Wardha district of Maharashtra on Saturday night.
The police have arrested two persons, identified as Vishal Dandi and Brijesh Duharwal. A third, Rakesh Nasvani, is missing.
All three were involved in illegal mining activities and chit fund companies, police sources said. The two arrested men confessed and led the police to the spot where his body was found, they added.
"They are related to manganese mafia... My brother was a good journalist. He exposed many of their corrupt practices," said Naveen Kothari, the brother of Sandeep Kothari.
Mr Kothari was kidnapped on his way to a village on a bike with a friend. The alleged attackers hit the bike with their car and allegedly thrashed the friend before taking away the journalist.
"He was murdered in the car and his body was set on fire near a railway track," said inspector Sanjay Chaukse. The body was later dumped at around 50 km away at Wardha in neighbouring Maharashtra.
The 40-year-old journalist was a local correspondent for a Jabalpur-based Hindi daily. He was allegedly under pressure to withdraw a case of illegal mining that he had filed at a local court.
Earlier this month, a journalist, Jagender Singh, was allegedly set on fire by policemen during a raid at his house in Shahjahanpur, Uttar Pradesh. He died a week later, on June 8.