Kalicharan Maharaj, whose controversial speech at a "dharma sansad" or religious meeting in Chhattisgarh's Raipur led to chief patron Mahant Ramsunder Das disowning the event and walking off stage in anger, was charged with promoting enmity between communities after former mayor Pramod Dubey filed a police case.
The news of his arrest was confirmed by Raipur senior police officer Prashant Agarwal.
According to police, Kalicharan booked a guest house in Khajuraho but did not stay there. He instead went to a rented house some 25 km from Khajuraho to dodge the police, who had been looking for him since the day a case was filed against him, said police.
To evade the police from tracking, all his close aides had also switched off their phones, sources said. This morning, a team of 10 policemen finally tracked him down, arrested him and took him back to Chhattisgarh's capital Raipur, reported NDTV.
He will be taken to a court by evening.
Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Narottam Mishra alleged the Chhattisgarh Police violated inter-state protocol by arresting Kalicharan from the state without informing local police, and asked the Madhya Pradesh police chief to take up the matter with his Chhattisgarh counterpart.
In his speech – clips of which have been widely circulated on social media, Kalicharan Maharaj declares that the aim of Islam is to capture the nation through politics. He also declared "Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi destroyed the country… salutations to Nathuram Godse, who killed him".
Kalicharan Maharaj demanded people elect a "staunch Hindu leader" to "protect" Hinduism.