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Wednesday, Oct 23, 2019

‘Dabholkar, Pansare killings had several commonalities’

The CBI informed the court that in the Dabholkar case, although all the accused are arrested, the agency is yet to recover the weapons used for committing the crime.

mumbai Updated: Jun 15, 2019 05:50 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
This undated photograph shows Indian activist Narendra Dabholkar who was gunned down by two motorcycle-riding attackers on Tuesday, Aug. 20 as he was taking a morning walk in Pune, India. The 67-year-old doctor-turned-activist had been receiving death threats for years since he began traveling by public buses to hundreds of villages around Maharashtra state to lecture against superstitions, religious extremism, black magic and animal or human sacrifice, according to his friend and fellow activist, Deepak Girme.
This undated photograph shows Indian activist Narendra Dabholkar who was gunned down by two motorcycle-riding attackers on Tuesday, Aug. 20 as he was taking a morning walk in Pune, India. The 67-year-old doctor-turned-activist had been receiving death threats for years since he began traveling by public buses to hundreds of villages around Maharashtra state to lecture against superstitions, religious extremism, black magic and animal or human sacrifice, according to his friend and fellow activist, Deepak Girme.(AP file photo)
         

The investigating agencies informed the Bombay high court (HC) on Friday that they have “unearthed several commonalities” in the Narendra Dabholkar-Govind Pansare murder cases. The division bench of justice SC Dharmadhikari and justice GS Patel was hearing the petitions filed by Dabholkar and Pansare’s families, in which they sought a court-monitored probe on the investigations conducted by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Special Investigation Team (SIT) formed by the Maharashtra Criminal Investigation Department (CID).

During the hearing, the counsel for the CID informed the court that they had found many similarities in both the murders. He also informed the court that in the Pansare murder case, the conspirators had been arrested, but they are on the lookout for one of the assailants who shot at the veteran Communist leader.

The CBI informed the court that in the Dabholkar case, although all the accused are arrested, the agency is yet to recover the weapons used for committing the crime. The CBI counsel said that it will launch a search operation within a month in Thane creek, where the assailants allegedly dumped the weapons after the rationalist was shot dead. The CBI informed the court that it is waiting to get the requisite permissions from the ministry concerned to carry out the search operation.

The court accepted the statement, but rapped the agencies for not showing any urgency in apprehending Pansare’s assailants and posted the matter for hearing after four weeks.

The bench said that in light of the fact that both, Dabholkar and Pansare, were eminent personalities, the investigations should have been expedited. However, the agencies failed in doing so. The judges added that the delay was affecting the credibility of the agencies and hence, the government should ensure that the probing officers get all the necessary help and guidance they need in their investigations. The bench also asked political leaders to ensure that the constitutional and civil rights of the citizens are safeguarded.

First Published: Jun 15, 2019 05:50 IST

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