Youtuber Elvish Yadav being produced in a court in the snake venom at rave case, in Greater Noida, Sunday, March 17, 2024.
Youtuber Elvish Yadav being produced in a court in the snake venom at rave case, in Greater Noida, Sunday, March 17, 2024.

Youtuber Elvish Yadav arrested in Noida snake venom case, sent to judicial custody

Noida | Controversial Youtuber Elvish Yadav was arrested on Sunday by Noida police in connection with a probe into the suspected use of snake venom as a recreational drug at a party here four months ago, officials said.

Yadav, a winner of reality show Bigg Boss OTT, was later produced in a special court in Surajpur which sent the 26-year-old social media influencer to 14-day judicial custody, they said.

He was among six people named in an FIR lodged at Noida's Sector 49 police station on November 3 last year. The five other accused, identified as snake charmers, were arrested in November but are currently out on bail, the officials said.

The case was lodged under provisions of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, Indian Penal Code sections 120B (party to criminal conspiracy), 284 (negligent conduct related to poison that endangers human safety) and 289 (negligent conduct with respect to animals), according to police.

Charges under the provisions of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act have also been added in the case in which Yadav, a resident of Haryana's Gurugram, has been arrested, police said.

"Elvish Yadav was called for questioning in the case. He was arrested after adequate evidence, including those linked to the NDPS Act, was found in the case. Further investigation is underway," Deputy Commissioner of Police (Noida) Vidya Sagar Mishra said.

The Noida police said during investigation in the case, it had collected some samples which have been confirmed by forensic laboratory as "snake venom".

"The accused has been arrested by a team of Sector 20 police station which was investigating the case," Additional DCP (Noida) Manish Mishra told PTI.

During probe, the case was transferred from Sector 49 police station to Sector 20 police station, he added.

On Sunday afternoon, Yadav was produced in the Sunday special court of the Remand Magistrate who sent him to jail for 14 days, according to police.

The Youtuber was then lodged in the Luksar jail in Greater Noida, police added.

Yadav has refuted the charges of involvement in the case and has been questioned by police in the past.

A sub-inspector, who was also the in-charge of Sector 49 police station where the FIR was registered, was shunted within days of the case being registered on the complaint of an official of animal rights group People For Animals (PFA).

Five people were arrested from a banquet hall in Sector 51 on November 3 and nine snakes, including five cobras, rescued from their possession while 20 ml of suspected snake venom was also seized.

However, police had said Yadav was not present at the party hall and they were probing his role in the whole case of snake venom use as a recreational drug.

PFA chairperson and BJP leader Maneka Gandhi accused Yadav of involvement in illegally selling snake venom and sought his immediate arrest.

On November 4, Yadav was briefly stopped for questioning by police in Rajasthan's Kota while he was travelling with his friends in a car but was let off soon.

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