Union minister Prahlad Patel's 26-year-old son has been arrested in an attempt to murder case, following an attack that left five people injured in Narsinghpur district of Madhya Pradesh, the police said on Tuesday, 18 June.
Patel’s son Prabal was among the seven persons arrested in connection with the attack on a group of persons at Gotegaon town.
The Union minister's nephew, Monu Patel, whose father is a sitting Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA, has also been booked in the case, but is not arrested yet.
Prahlad Patel, the BJP MP from Damoh, was recently inducted in the Union cabinet as the Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Tourism.
"The victims have alleged that Prabal Patel (26), Monu Patel (27) and about a dozen others attacked them at Bailhai Bazaar at around 11.30 pm on Monday. Gunshots were also fired, which hit one person,” Gurukaran Singh, Superintendent of Police (SP) told PTI.
‘7 Arrested, Search to Nab Others Underway’
The SP said that Home Guard jawan Ishwar Rai and four others were injured in the attack and all of them were referred to Jabalpur for further treatment.
He added that all the accused were booked under the relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), including 307 (attempt to murder) and 365 (kidnapping with intent to wrongfully confine a person).
Another police officer said that two of the victims, Himanshu Rathore and Rahul Rajput, were returning home after attending a marriage ceremony when they were allegedly intercepted and abused by Prabal Patel and his associates.
Later, the accused took the duo to the residence of Shivam Rai, where they beat up Rai, his father Ishwar Rai and his friend Mayank, the police officer said.
Gunshots were also fired during the attack and one of the bullets hit Rathore, causing injuries to his hand, the officer said.
The police officer added that the victims, in their complaint, also alleged that they were forcibly taken to Monu Patel's office earlier and beaten up by the accused.
He said the police were still to find out what led to the attack.
Monu, Prabal Being Framed: Jalam Patel
However, talking to PTI, former minister Jalam Patel claimed that his son Monu and nephew Prabal were not present at the crime spot.
"We have given a letter to the SP, urging him to conduct an inquiry into the case. Monu was in Jabalpur (at the time of the alleged incident). Prabal was also returning from Jabalpur and both were not present there (at the crime spot), but were framed in the case due to political rivalry,” he added.
Futhermore, he said, that the police should conduct an inquiry to trace the exact location of both Monu and Prabal Patel at the time of the incident.
Jalam Patel claims that the incident was a fallout of a dispute between some men, while Monu and Prabal Patel were deliberately dragged into it.