Manish BangaleManish Bangale

Ethical hacker Manish Bangale, who had claimed that senior BJP leader Eknath Khadse was in contact with global fugitive Dawood Ibrahim, has been charged of defaming Khadse by the Mumbai crime branch.

Two weeks ago, the cyber police filed a 788-page charge sheet against Bangale in 37th metropolitan court. Statements of 20-witnesses have been attached in the charge sheet. “During the probe, investigators found that the motive behind Bangale's act was to malign Khadse's public image and harm his reputation. He did this to show himself as a true patriot who is serving his nation,” said a senior police officer. Bangale hasn't been granted bail in the matter yet.

Eknath KhadseEknath Khadse

Confirming the development, deputy commissioner of police (cyber) Akbar Pathan said, “We have added sections 419 (cheating by personation), 465 (forgery), 469 (forgery for purpose of harming reputation) and 500 (defamation) of IPC to the case.”

In 2016, Bangale had claimed to have accessed phone calls between Dawood and Khadse by hacking into the authentication process of the Pakistan Telecommunication Company Ltd (PTCL), which gave him access to Dawood's telephone records.