Pune: The Central Bureau of Investigation yesterday produced Dr Virendra Tawde, one of the key accused in Dr Narendra Dabholkar murder case, for the third time in front of the judicial magistrate V B Gulve Patil and demanded extra four days of police custody, which the court declined.
Dr Virendra Tawde
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in its argument claimed that they are in possession of a hard disc recovered from Tawde’s Panvel flat in the June 1 raid that contains 2 TB full of Sanatan Sanstha literature. The same was recovered from the ashram in Miraj, which Tawde used to head.
In the remand hearing, CBI argued that certain portions in the two books "Kshatradharma Sadhana" and "Spirituality", written by Sanstha founder Dr Jayant Balaji Atavale have inflammatory content.
"Chapter number 11 of Kshatradharma Sadhana titled as ‘Spiritual practise for destroying Evil Devils’ says that to kill one’s enemy, there are three steps. First step is 5 per cent of physical training, the second step is an united front by all Sanstha members and the last step mentions that if one is not able to kill the enemy, chant the name of God loudly and let the bullet kill the evil person eventually," said B P Raju, CBI’s public prosecutor, adding that page number 60 in the book titled ‘Spirituality’ criticises Dr Dabolkar, his work on Andashraddha Nirmuloon Samiti (ANiS) and also CPI Leader Govind Pansare, who was killed in February last year.
The public prosecutor further said that this literature might be used to brainwash the ones involved in Dabholkar murder and also in other cases.
"We suspect there is a link between the offence and Sanstha literature. During the course of investigation, it was found that Sanstha has around 119 bank accounts that were being handled by Sarang Akolkar, an absconding accused in the 2009 Goa blast case and others like Vinay Pawar, Rudra Patil and his relative Malgonda Patil (main accused in Margao blast case)," said Raju, adding that Akolkar used to disguise and meet his parents in Pune house and Tawde was seen in the period from September to January in 2014-15 visiting Kolhapur, which he had denied initially but later claimed that he went there for his dental treatment.
CBI is also suspecting the 46-year-old ENT specialist Tawde’s role in Pansare and Dr M M Kurburgi’s murders. "Tawde is notorious and is misleading us. He finally said on Sunday, after being grilled for 11 days that his black motorcycle (which might be used for all the murders) was given to a fellow Sanstha member in 1995 and that he does not remember the vehicle number and neither is he aware of the RTO documents. We also need to probe the two cheques that were in the name of Malgonda and some 169 mobile handsets that were used," said Raju as a reason for demanding the extension of Tawde.
Defence lawyers Sanjeev Punawalekar, D R Shinde, Neeta Dhawade, Sushilkumar Pise and Chandrakant Bhosale objected to the CBI demand and argued, "The CBI was given names of two gun dealers, who could be involved in Dabholkar’s murder but they remained tight-lipped about it. For getting the bike details from the RTO Tawde’s police custody is not required."
The defence lawyers demanding judicial custody took strong objection when the literature was being spoken about.
"CBI is portraying a false image about Sanstha literature and bank accounts. The literature was in existence since the 1990s and cannot be connected to Dabholkar’s murder since many people have it."
On August 20, 2013 two bike-borne assailants fired four rounds at Dr Dabolkar who sustained one-bullet injuries on his forehead and three on chest.
Dr Tawde was permitted to interact with his lawyer Punawalekar for two minutes, to whom he asked about his surgeon wife and daughter, who studies in Std VIII. The couple is separated since a year and a half and wife Nidhi is mulling divorce from Tawde. She has returned from London a day before where she had gone for a trip. The CBI will interrogate her too as “one of the sims used by Dr Tawde was in her name.”
‘I will continue dad’s legacy’
Dr Dabolkar’s daughter Mukta, a lawyer herself was present in the court for the hearing. She broke down when she saw Tawde in the dock. Later she gathered herself and said, “My father was killed for his rational thinking and I too will continue to do the same.”
Kolhapur police want Tawde too
The Kolhapur Special Investigation Team (SIT) asked for Tawde’s custody in connection to Pansare’s murder. Special Public Prosecutor Harshad Nimbalkar said, “Dr Tawde was living in Kolhapur and had also carried a recee. His custody is needed to probe his involvement. We have got custody permission from Pune court”, adding that they will hold a meeting with the CBI officials to discuss the cases and then take Tawde to police custody from Yerawada Central prison by June 23 after the hearing in Bombay High Court. His lawyer Punawalekar objected to the custody saying that Tawde must be remanded to judicial custody first. Tawde was accordingly sent to Yerawada yesterday late evening.