Police to resume search ops to locate remains of Navi Mumbai cop in creek | mumbai news | Hindustan Times
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Police to resume search ops to locate remains of Navi Mumbai cop in creek

Police will use dredgers to excavate underwater debris where metallic objects had been spotted earlier

mumbai Updated: Apr 21, 2018 01:03 IST
Debasish Panigrahi
Debasish Panigrahi
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Navi Mumbai,ashwini bidre
The police said the key accused, Abhay Kurundkar, had dumped a sack containing Ashwini Bidre’s body parts in the creek after killing her in April 2016.(HT FILE)

The Navi Mumbai police will use dredgers to excavate underwater debris where metallic objects had been spotted by magnetometer scanners during the search for assistant police inspector Ashwini Bidre’s body parts in the Vasai creek. The police said the key accused, Abhay Kurundkar, had dumped a sack containing her body parts in the creek after killing her in April 2016.

According to the police, finding Bidre’s remains is crucial to nail the accused.

Bidre, 37, was allegedly murdered by senior inspector Abhay Kurundkar, 52, and his three accomplices on April 11, 2016. While some parts of her body were thrown into the creek on the day itself, some others were thrown the next day of the murder.

Earlier last week, magnetometers used by surveyors from Ocean Science and Surveying Pvt Ltd, a Belapur-based firm, had identified nine spots where the sack was suspected to have been dumped. Magnetometers, used to detect metals, were especially used in the backdrop of findings that the accused had tied 25kg of metallic weight to the sack before dumping it into the creek.

A senior official from the Navi Mumbai police told HT on Friday that though the week-long search operation to find the sack was called off earlier this week, the process of checking the objects identified by the magnetometers would continue. Since the spots are full of metallic debris, the police will use dredgers to excavate the underwater debris. “It is difficult for divers to check each and every object minutely as it requires remaining underwater for long. Instead, we will bring the debris to the coast with the help of dredgers so that their scanning becomes easy,” the senior official said.

The search for Bidre’s body in the creek had started in the first week of March after the Navi Mumbai police managed to identify the spot, where the sack was allegedly dumped, following the disclosures made by one accused in the case. Divers from the Indian Navy and the India Coast Guard (ICG) had conducted extensive search for four days, but to no avail. It was suspected that the sack is either stuck deeper in the sludge or has been swept away by currents.

The Navi Mumbai police then consulted oceanographers who said that the sack could have travelled to a maximum of 200-250 metres, from the place where it had been dumped, in the past two years. It was then decided to launch the expensive search by roping in a private firm at an approximate cost of Rs1.35 lakh a day. The second phase search aided by gradiometers that continued for a week had yielded no results either. The third phase resumed last week in which advanced magnetometers, which are used by the Israeli army, were utilised. The magnetometers had sensed underwater metallic debris.

Meanwhile, the official said that the police have started scouting for firms using more advanced underwater survey equipment. Moreover, opinion is also being sought from experts of IIT-Bombay.

First Published: Apr 21, 2018 01:03 IST