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Bharati Yadav denies affair
By Our Staff Reporter

NEW DELHI, MARCH 2.

Bharati Yadav, sister of prime accused Vikas Yadav in the Nitish Katara kidnapping-cum-murder case, told the Ghaziabad police today that Nitish was just a friend at the management institute and there was ``no affair'' between them. The police, who had already summoned Bharati, today recorded her statement following the directions of the Delhi High Court issued yesterday in the matter.

``She told us that she just happened to know Nitish as he was a classmate at the management institute,'' said the Deputy Inspector-General (Meerut Range), Arun Kumar. He, however, maintained that her statement would not deter the police from proving their case in court. ``It is her statement but we have other evidence and facts in support of our case,'' he said

In a significant development, while Bharati did not approach the police earlier, she appeared before a television channel and was interviewed by a national daily on Friday in which she summarily denied having had any relationship with Nitish. The police have been saying that kidnapping and murder of Nitish was the result of Vikas Yadav taking objection to the affair of his sister and Nitish. Vikas' father D.P Yadav, a Rajya Sabha MP, has been claiming that his son was being framed as part of a political conspiracy.

Reacting to the statements attributed to Bharati, Ms. Neelam Katara, mother of Nitish, said it was clear from the interview that she had been forced to say things which she might have not wanted to. ``It has not come as a surprise to us. Her father was present when the interviews were being taken and this makes her statements understandable,'' she said. ``I have said what I had to. It is for the other agencies to decide how authentic Bharati's statements are,'' she added.

Interestingly, the interviews were arranged by D.P Yadav after the Delhi High Court had directed the Ghaziabad police to get Bharati's statement recorded by today. Counsel for Vikas Yadav had told the court that it was the police which was not recording Bharati's statement, though she was ready.

Bharati's refusal to acknowledge her relationship with Nitish has come at a time when the accused have reportedly confessed -- during the 24-hour police remand which ended yesterday -- to have kidnapped and murdered Nitish in the early hours of February 17. At the instance of the accused, police have also recovered the weapon of offence, a hammer, and Nitish's wrist watch from the place where the charred body, believed to be that of Nitish, was found from Khurja.

Meanwhile, the Ghaziabad police have filed a revision petition in the court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate in Ghaziabad seeking a 10-day remand for the accused in order to effect recoveries, particularly the vehicle used in the incident. The matter will be taken up by the court on Monday.

The police have said in the application that the vehicle, which was supposed to be in Alwar was not found there and now could be in Uttar Pradesh, Haryana or Punjab.

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