New Delhi/Ranchi: Ranjit Kohli alias Rakibul Hasan, who is under arrest for allegedly torturing national level shooter Tara Shahdeo to convert to Islam after marriage, claimed on Wednesday that he is a Sikh and his name is 'Ranjit Singh Kohli'.
Kohli made the claim while he was being taken to a Delhi court. The Jharkhand Police has got a three-day transit remand of Kohli.
Kohli said that the allegations made by his wife Tara Shahdeo are false. Importantly, he did accept that he has been reading Koran since 2007.
While the Jharkhand Police is yet to confirm whether Kohli is indeed Khan, media reports have quoted his acquaintances accepting that he was known as Rakibul Hasan Khan to them.
30-year-old Khan and his mother Kaushalya Rani alias Kausar Parveen were arrested from Delhi yesterday by a joint team of Jharkhand Police and their counterparts in the national capital.
23-year-old Tara and Rakibul had got married on July 7 this year as per Hindu tradition. Tara met Rakibul at the shooting range where he used to come daily to see her practice, eventually they came closer and decided to marry. Tara alleged that Rakibul did not disclose he was a Muslim and instead faked his identity as a Hindu during courtship.
Their grand marriage ceremony in Ranchi was attended by several politicians and big industrialists.
Tara said that Kohli revealed his true identity on the first night of marriage and forced her to convert to Islam.
In her FIR, Shahdeo alleged that her husband had assaulted her because of her refusal to convert to Islam. Tara claimed that she was kept under confinement for one month and tortured for her refusal to convert to Islam; her name was also changed to Sara.
After suffering abuse for a month, she managed to get in touch with her family, leading to her rescue.
Reacting to the arrests, Shahdeo alleged that the Jharkhand administration has deliberately delayed Khan's arrest to give him time to destroy evidence.
DGP Rajiv Kumar denied the charge and stressed that the police had acted immediately and pointed out that Khan's house in Ranchi has been sealed and his cars confiscated.
Meanwhile, reports claimed that Khan's's mother Kaushalya Devi was a Muslim before her marriage and reconverted to her religion after the death of her husband.
Also, the meteoric rise of Rakibul Hasan Khan from a small time videographer to a rich man within a short span of four years is also under the scrutiny.
Reports quoted police as saying that Khan was unemployed but led luxurious life. He lived in upscale Blair Apartment in Ranchi and moved around in SUVs.
For the record he ran a nondescript NGO, Kaushal Bio-tech India Pvt Limited, but his real source of income remains unknown.
Chief Minister Hemant Soren has assured justice to Tara Shahdeo and asked Hindu outfits not to politicise the matter.