Brother-in-law arrested for acid attack on sisters

The Uttar Pradesh Police Friday arrested two men for the April 2 acid attack on four sisters, all teachers, in Shamli.

Babar Akthar and Javed Iqbal were arrested from Kandhla in Shamli, SP Abdul Hamid said. Babar is married to the victims' sister Sana, a teacher in Delhi.

"The two men have been arrested for planning the attack. There were two locals who executed the plan and attacked the four women. We will arrest them soon," Hamid said. "The attack was the result of a dispute between Babar's wife and Isha. I don't want to comment on the nature of the dispute."

Sources in the police, however, said Babar was having an affair with his sister-in-law Isha for the past year and a half and when she threatened to make their relationship public, he planned the attack. Babar told his interrogators that he had directed the bikers whom he had hired for the purpose to throw acid only on Isha, the police said. They, however, injured all four sisters, Isha the most severely, while the sisters were returning home from work.

To hoodwink investigators, Babar, a lab assistant at a private clinic in Delhi, rushed to be with Isha when she was shifted to the capital for treatment and remained by her side all along. But then, the police found he had been in constant touch with Isha, and called him to Kandhla for interrogation. "His statements were contradictory. So he was grilled and he confessed to his crime and revealed the names of the co-accused. One of them has been arrested," Hamid said. The other accused, Javed Iqbal, is a contractor and is related to Municipal Chairman of Kandhla.

Isha's family said they were ignorant of Babar's role in the attack. "We don't know what is happening. He was called to police station for questioning and now we are hearing all sorts of things. We don't want to comment on the arrest," said Anjum, the eldest of Isha's eight sisters.

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