The founder of the Bhim Army, Chandrashekhar, was released from Saharanpur jail at around 2.40 am on Friday, the UP Police said.

Chandrashekhar, 30, was arrested in June 2017 in connection with the May 5 clashes in which one person was killed and 16 others were injured at Shabbirpur village in Saharanpur, Uttar Pradesh. He was booked under the National Security Act and was to be released in November.

The Uttar Pradesh government had on Thursday issued orders for his early release on sympathy grounds after an appeal was made by Chandrashekhar’s mother.

“Chandra Shekhar alias Ravan’s mother had submitted a plea. Keeping the current situation in mind, the government is taking a sympathetic view and is directing the Saharanpur administration to release him with immediate effect,” the UP government’s order said.

On November 2, 2017, the Allahabad High Court had granted bail to Chandrashekhar. However, a day before his release, he was booked under the NSA, thus preventing his release.

“After going through the representation of Chandrashekhar’s mother, it has been decided to release him early. He had to be in jail till November 1,” a spokesperson of the Home Department said in Lucknow on Thursday.

The NSA was invoked against Chandrashekhar and five others in the case. While three people were released earlier, Chandrashekhar, Sonu and Shiv Kumar are still in jail.

Sonu and Shiv Kumar will also be released early, the spokesman said, adding that the district magistrate of Saharanpur had been directed “to release them”.