Gorakhpur police on Monday said it had brought a man booked under UP's anti-conversion law from Karnataka and handed over the 19-year-old girl who was allegedly abducted by him to her family. However, further action in the case will be taken based on the girl's statement as she is an adult, the police said.
"The girl is in the custody of her parents," Circle Officer Campierganj Rahul Bhati said. Following a complaint by the girl's father, a case was lodged against the Karnataka man for allegedly kidnapping her after befriending her while hiding his religious identity.
A missing report was lodged initially by the girl's father on January 5 after she did not return home from college, Station House Officer, Chiluatal, Neeraj Kumar Rai said. The girl's call records showed that she used to talk to a man frequently. The girl's father, on January 11, lodged a complaint against the man accusing him of kidnapping her, police said.
"After the FIR, a three-member police team went Karnataka, and with the help of surveillance, arrested the accused and also recovered the girl," SHO Rai said. The case was lodged under sections 366 (kidnapping, abduction or inducing woman to compel her into marriage ) and 363 (kidnapping) of the Indian Penal Code, besides the new anti-conversion law of the Uttar Pradesh government, the SHO said.
The recently promulgated Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Ordinance, 2020, nullifies marriages if they are carried out for the sole purpose of religious conversion.