Poet Vara Vara Rao arrested in Hyderabad

Hyderabad: Pune police arrested prominent poet Vara Vara Rao on Tuesday in connection with an alleged plot by Maoist militants to kill Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Rao, a leader of the Revolutionary Writers Association and sympathiser of Maoist ideology, was arrested after a seven-hour-long search of his home in Gandhinagar area of Hyderabad.

Vara Vara’s wife told the media later police officials questioned him about his links with the Maoists and alleged letter threatening to kill the Prime Minister.

The team of Pune police officials also searched the houses six others including journalists Kranti and Kurmanath and Prof Satyanarayana of Indian and Foreign Languages University in different parts of Hyderabad.

During the raid which started at 6am police had locked the house from inside and seized the mobile phones of all the family members.

As news of the raid spread, a large number of Rao’s supporters and human rights activists gathered outside.

Local police who had surrounded the place, did not allow them to enter the building leading to heated arguments.

Later Rao was produced before a local court in Nampally and shifted to Pune on a transit warrant following a medical check up at Gandhi hospital.

The raids came after Pune police registered a case in connection with the alleged Maoist letter regarding the conspiracy to kill Prime Minister Modi.

Police said a letter was recovered from Maoist sympathiser Ronald Wilson, who was arrested in connection with the Elgaar Parishad rally case.

Police allege that, in the letter, Vara Vara Rao appreciated the recipient of the letter for the successful attack by Naxalites in Surajgad in Gadhiroli.

Pune police say that the letter found on Wilson’s laptop had 27 names including Rao.

However Rao immediately denied the allegation. Soon after Pune police announced recovery of the letter Rao addressed a press conference in Hyderabad alleging that the letter was fake and police were trying to frame him in a false case.

Meanwhile the CPI secretary K. Narayana alleged that Rao’s arrest was part of a conspiracy to kill him. Condemning the arrest Narayana said that by arresting Rao, the Modi government was trying to suppress voices of dissent. He also alleged that the Telangana government was also part of the conspiracy.

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