नरेंद्र दाभोलकर हत्याकांड: पुणे कोर्ट ने दो को दोषी ठहराया, तीन को बरी किया

नरेंद्र दाभोलकर हत्याकांड: पुणे कोर्ट ने दो को दोषी ठहराया, तीन को बरी किया

Narendra Dabholkar murder: Pune Court convicts two, acquits three

Pune Court convicts two in Narendra Dabholkar murder, sentences life imprisonment; three acquitted. Case involves rationalist's killing in 2013.

  • National News
  • 112
  • 10, May, 2024
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Tamanna Varshney
  • @TamannaVarshney

In a significant development today, a Pune Court convicted two individuals and acquitted three in the murder case of rationalist Narendra Dabholkar.

The convicted individuals, Sachin Andure and Sharad Kalaskar, were sentenced to life imprisonment and fined ₹5 lakh each. On the other hand, Dr. Virendrasinh Tawade, Vikram Bhave, and Sanjeev Punalekar were acquitted.

The judgment was pronounced by Sessions judge PP Jadhav after a nearly three-year trial. The Court noted that while there was evidence of motive against Tawade and reasonable suspicion against Punalekar and Bhave, the prosecution failed to establish their involvement with reliable evidence. However, it was unequivocally proven that Andure and Kalaskar had murdered Dabholkar by firing bullets from firearms.

The trial, which began in 2021, followed the institution of the sessions case in 2016. Dabholkar, the founder of Maharashtra Andhashraddha Nirmoolan Samiti (MANS), was fatally shot by two assailants during a morning walk in Pune in 2013.

The accused individuals, associated with the Sanatan Sanstha organization, were arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) between 2016 and 2019. The CBI took over the case in 2014 from Pune City Police and filed chargesheets against five accused.

Dr. Virendrasingh Tawade, Sachin Andure, Sharad Kalaskar, and Vikram Bhave were charged with various offenses including murder, criminal conspiracy, and acts under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and Arms Act. Sanjeev Punalekar, a Mumbai-based lawyer, was charged for causing disappearance of evidence.

While Tawade, Andure, and Kalaskar are in judicial custody, Bhave and Punalekar are out on bail. Charges were framed against all five accused by the Pune sessions court on September 15, 2021.

The Court noted that there was a conspiracy to eliminate Dr. Dabholkar to create fear and prevent others from engaging in the activities of the 'Andhashradha Nirmulan Samiti'.

In 2015, Dabholkar's children moved the High Court seeking the appointment of an independent Special Investigation Team (SIT) and for the court to monitor the investigation. The High Court began monitoring the investigation in August 2015.

In December 2022, Tawade moved the Court with an interim application to discontinue the monitoring, arguing that since the trial had commenced, the High Court could stop monitoring the case. Subsequently, another accused also moved the Court seeking to discontinue the monitoring.

During one hearing, the High Court expressed that it could not perpetually monitor the case. The investigating agency also informed the Court... [Continuation needed]

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Tamanna Varshney

  • @TamannaVarshney