Maharashtra Man Arrested in Uttar Pradesh 'Conversion Racket' Case
The Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terrorist Squad arrested Dheeraj Jagtap for his alleged involvement in the conversion racket.
The Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) on Friday, 1 October, arrested a resident of Maharashtra's Yavatmal for his alleged engagement in a religious conversion racket.
The 44-year-old man, Dheeraj Jagtap alias Dheeraj Deshmukh, was nabbed from Kanpur and brought to the ATS office in Lucknow, where he was arrested, The Indian Express reported. Jagtap had reportedly converted to Islam a year ago.
His arrest raises the total number of persons apprehended in the case to 14.
The 'Conversion Racket'
The Uttar Pradesh Police, in June, had arrested two men from south Delhi on the charges of running an illegal religious conversion syndicate across the country.
The two accused, Mufti Qazi Jahangir Qasmi and Mohammad Umar Gautam, both residents of Jamia Nagar, were allegedly involved in the conversion of over 1,000 children and women with hearing impairment to Islam, India Today had reported.
Police told The Indian Express that Dheeraj Jagtap had been working with "prime accused" Umar Gautam and Maulana Kaleem Siddiqui.
Siddiqui, a Muslim cleric, had been arrested on 21 September in connection with the case.
Jagtap had purportedly used incentives such as jobs and other kind of aids to lure people to convert to Islam, as per the police.
According to the UP police, the conversion syndicate had received foreign funding including from the ISI to convert people to Islam, and had succeeded in converting around 1,000 people in the state.
The accused in the racket are alleged to have targeted children with disabilities, women, unemployed and poor persons with promises of jobs, education, marriage and money.
(With inputs from The Indian Express and India Today)
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