Youtuber Elvish Yadav was questioned by the Noida Police early Wednesday over suspected use of snake venom at a party, officials said, even as an investigation by the veterinary department found venom glands missing in all nine snakes that were rescued last week.
Yadav, winner of reality show Bigg Boss OTT, was among the six named in the FIR lodged here last week under provisions of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and for criminal conspiracy under Indian Penal Code section 120-B.
"Yadav has joined the investigation. He came to the police station around 11.30 pm on Tuesday. He was then questioned for around two hours and let off. He will be called again," a senior officer of the Noida Police said, requesting anonymity.
The police have already applied for remand of the five people who were arrested in the case.
Dr Nikhil Varshney, who headed the probe committee, said that the veterinary department in its probe found that venom glands were missing in all nine snakes, including five cobras, that were rescued on November 3 from possession of the accused persons.
Also, teeth were missing in eight of the nine snakes that were rescued. We were asked to conduct the inquiry by the Forest Department and we have submitted our report to it for further action, Dr Varshney said.
Divisional Forest Officer Pramod Kumar Srivastava said his department has received the inquiry report from the Veterinary Department and would now submit it in the court for further legal proceedings.
The nine snakes were in our custody and today we have released them in Surajpur Wetlands after taking permission from the court, Srivastava said.
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 also seized from their possession.
However, police 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, which was unearthed by animal rights group PFA (People for Animals).