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Police Trace UP Bizman Who Changed Look, Camped at Farmers' Protest to Escape Lenders, Get Free Food

Bharatiya Kisan Union spokesperson Rakesh Tikait addresses farmers during their protest against the new farm laws, at Ghazipur border in New Delhi, on December 12, 2020. (PTI Photo)

Bharatiya Kisan Union spokesperson Rakesh Tikait addresses farmers during their protest against the new farm laws, at Ghazipur border in New Delhi, on December 12, 2020. (PTI Photo)

Praveen, a resident of Murad Nagar town, had left his house on December 1 but did not return, police said. He was found at the Ghazipur-Ghaziabad (Uttar Pradesh gate) border.

A debt-ridden businessman, who changed his appearance and joined the ongoing farmers' protests at one of the Delhi border points to escape moneylenders, was traced by police on Thursday. Praveen, a resident of Murad Nagar town, had left his house on December 1 but did not return, police said. He was found at the Ghazipur-Ghaziabad (Uttar Pradesh gate) border.

On a previous occasion too, he had gone missing but had returned some days later, therefore, his family did not lodge a police complaint till December 12, police said. Praveen was tracked with the help of his mobile phone which was put under surveillance and his car was found parked near the protest site, superintendent of police (rural) Iraj Raja told PTI.

"He had grown a beard and looked like a Sikh man. However, we recognised him as was getting inside his car," a police officer said. Upon interrogation, he told the police that he was under debt and the lenders were mounting pressure on him to return their loans.

To escape their harassment, he began camping at the protest site and was getting free food there, they said.

first published:December 18, 2020, 07:12 IST