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Maharashtra cops draw HC flak over probe in Pansare killing

The Tribune 2019-03-14 19:50:00

Govind Pansare. — File photo

The Bombay High Court on Thursday hit out at the Special Investigation Team of the Maharashtra police over the investigation into the murder of rationalist Govind Pansare.

Judges S C Dharmadhikari and B P Colabawalla of the Bombay HC called out the investigators for shoddy investigation into the murder.

After perusing the progress report on the investigations submitted by the SIT in a sealed cover, the court summoned the Additional Chief Secretary in charge of the Home Department on March 28 to explain the reasons behind the slow progress in the case.

"Let the state feel some pressure. It must face consequences some day. For most often, the police get away. No memos are issued, no explanations sought," the bench said. The judges also wondered why crimes are probed only after the court's intervention.

Pointing out to several gaps in the investigation by the SIT, the court noted one instance where the investigators were content with visiting the place where one of the accused owned an immovable property. "What stops an accused from .... hiding anywhere across the
country. Merely because someone owns a property doesn't mean he will
stick around in that area," the court observed.

"The elemenatary steps you are taking to nab the accused have reduced
you to a laughing stock," the judges said.

The court also noted that investigations like these have created a perception in the minds of the public that some peoplecould get away "only because they enjoy certain patronage".

The court was hearing the petitions filed by the families of Pansare and rationalist Narendra Dabholkar who sought judicial intervention in the probe into the murders.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) which is probing the murder of Dabholkar submitted that his assailants have been arrested and the chargesheet filed in the case. The agency, however, sought additional time to probe some additional issues.

Pansare who was shot on February 16, 2015 in Kolhapur succumbed to his injuries five days later.

Dabholkar was shot dead on August 20, 2013, in Pune while on his morning walk.

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