Ram Vriksha Yadav, the alleged mastermind of the violence in Mathura that killed 24 people, died in clashes triggered by a police anti-encroachment drive against members of his cult, officials said on Saturday.
Uttar Pradesh director general of police Javeed Ahmed tweeted on Saturday evening that Yadav’s associates – members of the self-styled revolutionary group Swadhin Bharat Vidhik Satyagrah – identified him among the 11-odd charred bodies lying in Mathura’s Jawahar Bagh.
Some of the dead in Mathura operation identified. Rambriksh Yadav’s body identified by associates. Family intimated for final confirmation.
Yadav, seen in photos as a small, greying man dressed in kurta and dhoti, headed the little-known armed sect that called themselves followers of freedom fighter Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.
They squatted in Jawahar Bagh for over two years, building a self-sustained unit inside the 280 –acre government park, growing vegetables and even devising their own justice system.
Police descended on the encroachers late on Thursday after a court ordered their removal. But the squatters – who had sophisticated arms with them – allegedly opened fire on the force and killed two senior police officers, including the city superintendent of police.
This triggered clashes and rioting inside the park that left 24 people dead.