The alleged plan to abduct and eliminate Bhanwari was hatched at a meeting on August 8 in Jodhpur, three weeks ahead of her September 1 abduction, the CBI said.
As part of the plan, a suspect arrested in the case, Shahabuddin had allegedly staged a mock-abduction of Bhanwari at a bus stop a few days later, said an agency source.
“Shahabuddin arranged for a few men to stage Bhanwari’s abduction. He then faked a rescue to win her trust. This mock drill was done to gain Bhanwari’s trust for the actual abduction later,” said the source.
Shahbuddin and another arrested suspect, Sohan Lal, also bought two SIM cards with fake IDs. “The duo contacted Devi on these two numbers only,” said the source. The CBI suspects, Shahabuddin and Sohan Lal strangulated Devi in a jeep, on the directions of absconding suspect Sahiram. The agency suspects Mahipal Maderna had hired Sahiram for R50 lakh to kill Bhanwari, who was allegedly blackmailing him with a sex CD.
Maderna shifted to delhi for questioning
With the intention of getting Maderna out of his ‘comfort zone’, the CBI on Sunday decided to shift the venue of his questioning from Jodhpur to the agency’s headquarters in Delhi.
Maderna, 59, was arrested on Friday in Jodhpur along with Parasram Bishnoi, brother of Congress MLA Malkhan Singh. Maderna is in CBI custody till December 9.
According to CBI sources, Maderna holds considerable clout in Jodhpur and his relatives kept coming to meet him in the circuit house where he was being questioned.
The CBI also suspects that messages were being passed by the visitors.
Besides, his arrest and presence in Jodhpur might have led to a law and order problem as Maderna’s followers have been quite aggressive in the last few days. “An inspector rank officer of the CBI team had got a threat call as well. The caller warned the officer with dire consequences for continuing with investigation,” an officer said.