A former senior Uttar Pradesh police officer was arrested on Friday in a dramatic fashion in Lucknow in an abetment-to-suicide case shortly after he proposed the name of his proposed political party that, he said, will contest the 2022 state assembly polls. Forcibly retired by the Union Home Ministry in March this year for "non-performance", IPS officer Amitabh Thakur was shoved into a department jeep at his residence in the state capital even as he protested and resisted being taken away -- all in full public view.
The UP police said in a statement that evidence found during a preliminary probe had implicated Mr Thakur. The police action was captured in a video recording that sparked much outrage. "I will not go unless you show me an FIR," Mr Thakur is heard saying in the video.
भूतपूर्व पुलिस के विरुद्ध भाजपा सरकार की पुलिस का अभूतपूर्व कार्य!— Akhilesh Yadav (@yadavakhilesh) August 27, 2021
भाजपाई राजनीति लोगों के बीच दरार पैदा करके ही जिंदा है. अब भाजपा सरकार के दबाव के कारण पुलिस ही पुलिस के ख़िलाफ़ काम करने पर मजबूर है. एक सेनानिवृत आईपीएस के साथ ऐसा व्यवहार अक्षम्य है. #नहीं_चाहिए_भाजपाpic.twitter.com/o7OG4XRAMy
Mr Thakur was earlier suspended from service in July 2015 under the Samajwadi Party's Akhilesh Yadav government. Days before that, he had accused former Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav of threatening him.
His suspension was, however, stayed in April 2016 and he was reinstated.
More recently, the former officer was among many top police officials and politicians named by a 24-year-old woman who died on Tuesday in a Delhi hospital after attempting suicide, along with her male friend, at the Supreme Court's gates on August 16.
In 2019, she had filed a police case against BSP parliamentarian from UP Atul Rai, accusing him of raping her. In a Facebook Live video she and her male friend made before setting themselves ablaze, she also named officials, including Mr Thakur, who allegedly colluded with the Ghosi MP's family to harass her with a police case.
In March this year, the Union Home Ministry ordered Mr Thakur's premature retirement saying he was "not found fit to be retained for the remaining tenure of his service". An officer of Uttar Pradesh cadre, he would have retired in 2028.
Following this, his wife, RTI activist Nutan Thakur, had said earlier this month that he would be contesting against Mr Adityanath in the upcoming state elections. The former officer himself had declared this on social media.
"Adityanath took many undemocratic, improper, suppressive, harassing and discriminatory steps during his tenure as Chief Minister. Hence, Amitabh shall be contesting the election against Adityanath from wherever he contests," Ms Thakur had said, according to a PTI report.
A little before his arrest, he proposed the name -- Adhikar Sena -- of his new outfit, PTI reported.