A day after an alleged Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) worker was murdered in a busy market at Dahisar (East), the police beefed up patrolling in the area.
On Monday evening, Mira Road resident Yashwant Otle (49) and his associate Chandrakant Shinde (46) were near Jalaram sweet mart on Barucha Road when two unidentified men approached them and attacked Otle with a chopper, killing him instantly. Shinde too suffered injuries on his hand when he tried to stop the assailants. But before passersby could react, the men fled.
As Otle was murdered on the day when he was to officially join the Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh (BBM) party, founded by Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar, the police suspect political rivalry.
“There were no untoward incidents in the area but owners kept their shops closed,” said Senior Inspector Ramesh Keni. “We have called in the Riot Control Police and the Delta group and also increased police bandobast in the area.” The police said Otle had received an anonymous threat call an hour before the incident, warning him to “quit whatever he was up to”. The police will now check his phone records.
However, his uncle Ramesh Otle claimed they were affiliated to the Republican Party of India (RPI) and not MNS. “Ramesh told us that they had members who would join BBM with them which irked the RPI members in the locality,” said Keni. The police are also probing the angle of an old slum rehabilitation dispute. The Ramabai Ambedkar library, that his uncle Ramesh ran for several years, had been demolished by a builder under the SRA scheme.
“This had led to a dispute between Suresh and the builder,” added Keni.
The police have detained the builder and some RPI members for questioning.
Otle had been a member of the RPI before he joined the Bahujan Samaj Party. He later allegedly defected to the MNS. He is survived by his wife and three sons.