Jailed Meghalaya BJP Leader Arrested in Third Case

The BJP’s Meghalaya vice-president Bernard N Marak, who is in jail in connection with two cases including one of running a sex racket from his farmhouse, was arrested in a third case, a police officer said on Thursday. In the new case, Marak, a former militant leader, was charged with extortion, cheating, and forgery. He was arrested on Wednesday and a court in West Garo Hills district remanded him to five days of police custody.

West Garo Hills Superintendent of Police Vivekanand Singh said the BJP leader was arrested for his alleged involvement in extorting money from traders leading to a rise in prices of certain food items. Marak was accused of committing offences under IPC sections involving extortion, cheating, forgery, and others, Singh said.

He was first arrested in Uttar Pradesh on July 29 on the charge of operating a sex racket from his farmhouse in West Garo Hills district. On July 22, six minors were rescued from the farmhouse. The police arrested 73 people from there, seized their cars, and recovered alcoholic beverages and condoms. He was arrested again on August 10 under the Explosive Substances Act. A total of 35 gelatine sticks and 100 detonators, four crossbows, and 15 arrows were seized from the BJP leader’s farmhouse, the police have said.

The BJP is a part of the state’s ruling Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA), led by Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma of the National People’s Party (NPP). Marak was the chairman of the now-disbanded armed rebel group ANVC(B), a breakaway faction of the Achik National Volunteer Council before he joined the BJP. He was later elected to the Garo Hills Autonomous District Council from Tura.

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