The CBI, while probing the rationalist Narendra Dabholkar's murder, raided the Pune house of Sarang Akolkar, a 2009 Margao blast case accused; house of another suspect in Panvel was also raided
The Central Bureau of Investigation on Wednesday raided the houses of two suspects — Sarang Akolkar, an alleged member of Sanatan Sanstha, in Pune and Hindu Janajagruti Samiti member Virendra Singh Tawde in Panvel — in connection with the murder of rationalist Narendra Dabholkar. Akolkar, who is already wanted in the 2009 Margao blast case by the National Investigation Agency, is believed to be one of the main conspirators in the Dabholkar murder case too.
Narendra Dabholkar was shot dead by two bike-borne assailants on August 20, 2013 on Omkareshwar Bridge behind Balgandharv Rangmandir in Pune. File pic
When CBI reached Akolkar’s Pune house at 7.20 am, they found it locked. A CBI source said, “Sarang may be associated with Sanatan Sanstha and we suspect he is involved in the rationalist’s murder too. We went to his house on Wednesday but it was locked. We got the house keys from the chairman of the residential society and then searched the place till 2 pm. We found certain documents, mobile numbers, e-mails during the searches and they are being scrutinized.”
CBI sources said the two came under scanner after the agency found some “cyber forensic evidence” about their alleged role in the murder case of Dabholkar.
Narendra Dabholkar was shot dead by two bike-borne assailants on August 20, 2013 on Omkareshwar Bridge behind Balgandharv Rangmandir in Pune. The case was initially investigated by the local Deccan Police, but in May 2014, the Bombay High Court ordered the CBI to take over. During CBI’s investigation, Akolkar’s name cropped up as one of the key conspirators.
Akolkar has been on NIA’s wanted list for the Goa’s Margao blast case, in which two alleged Sanatan Sanstha members were killed after a bomb they were carrying on a scooter blew up in Margao in October 2009.
The NIA has slapped various charges on Sarang for conspiring and collecting arms for waging war against the state as well as mischief under Indian Penal Code and relevant sections of the Explosive Substance Act and the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.
NIA has also got a Red Corner Notice issued by the Interpol against him. However, both the central investigation agencies have failed to trace him till date.
Sanatan Sanstha says
Abhay Vartak, spokesperson of Sanatan Sanstha, accused the CBI of trespassing into Sarang Akolkar’s house. “CBI has trespassed into Akolkar’s house and without informing his family they broke the lock of the cupboard and scattered their things which is illegal.”
Vartak further said that the investigating agency had Sarang’s parents’ contact number and yet they did not contact them before breaking in.
Vartak also responded to a tweet by AAP leader Ashish Khetan blaming the Sanstha for Dabholkar’s murder. “Agencies have cracked the case. ‘Sadhaks’ of Sanatan Sanstha & HJS behind Dr Dabholkar’s murder identified,” tweeted Khetan, to which Vartak said few CBI officers were hand in glove with the AAP leader. Khetan again responded on the social networking website by saying, “Sanatan Sanstha is lashing out at me. Want them to know that they may have terrorists & murderers in their ranks but I'm not afraid of them.”
— Inputs by Shikha Vatsala