Gauri Lankesh murder: SIT stumbles upon plot to kill another writer-rationalist
The SIT achieved a lead in the Gauri Lankesh murder case after it got custody of KT Naveen Kumar, an illegal arms dealer from Mandya district, last week.Updated: Mar 05, 2018 22:33 IST
The special investigation team (SIT) probing the murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh has discovered a plot to murder Mysuru-based writer KS Bhagwan, known for his rationalist views, according to an officer associated with the case.
The SIT achieved a lead in the Lankesh murder case after it got custody of KT Naveen Kumar, an illegal arms dealer from Mandya district, last week. According to the officer, Kumar played a minor role in Lankesh’s murder. The officer did not share details of Kumar’s alleged involvement.
“Questioning Kumar has led to discovery of a plot to kill Bhagwan,” said the officer, who did not want to be named. “An investigation is underway.”
Bhagwan has often received threat calls. He got as many as 20 such calls in September 2015. The calls stopped after he registered complaints with the police.
Asked about the discovery of a plot targeting him, the writer replied that he tried to follow the Constitution that makes it “our fundamental duty to promote a scientific temper.”
In the immediate aftermath of Lankesh’s murder, the Karnataka government had provided security to all rationalist thinkers and writers in the state, including Bhagwan. “As of last week, the security has been increased in light of this threat,” said Bhagwan.
This is not the first murder plot the SIT has stumbled upon in its quest to nab Lankesh’s killers. While cracking down on illegal arms traders, the SIT had similarly stumbled upon the case of a tabloid editor allegedly giving a contract to get one of his colleagues killed.
A senior police officer said, “While it is good that we have stumbled upon these cases, it will be great if we make progress in the Gauri Lankesh murder case.” This officer also declined to be named.