“We wonder if he would have hacked us down the way he murdered others if we had a fight with him,” Ganpat-rao Shinde, Vijay Palande’s brother-in-law and former sarpanch of Shirgaon village in Ratnagiri, about 240 km from Mumbai, told Hindustan Times.
Palande has been arrested for killing two Andheri residents — senior citizen Arun Tikku and aspiring Bollywood producer Karan Kakkad.
“It is not the murders alone but the ruthlessness that has sent shivers down our spines. This man has been to our house so many times,” Shinde added.
As news about Palande’s sister living at their village spread, things have become difficult for the Shindes, especially after Palande’s accomplices Dhanan-jay Shinde and Manoj Gajkosh were arrested from their house. “Whenever I go out, I feel people are staring at me. I have been fortunate to earn the respect of people, and was also elected the sarpanch, but this incident has jolted our lives,” said Shinde.
Shinde said he repents helping Palande. “After the double murders he was convicted for, most of his family stopped talking to him. We allowed him into our house thinking he had mended his ways.”