Questions are being raised about the security measures at the Shivajinagar District and Sessions Court, after two men armed with knives assaulted a 23-year-old man who was being escorted by the police inside the premises yesterday.
Gultekdi resident Arun Machindra Chakale was being presented in the court after he was made accused in an abetment to suicide case. But, at around 3 pm, when he was making his way to the court, two men approached him from behind and attacked him.
Cops escorting him overpowered one of the attackers, but the second assailant managed to slash Chakale’s neck. Cops, however, pulled Chakale away in the nick of time before more harm could be inflicted. He was rushed to Sassoon hospital where he was treated for his injuries, and was brought back to the court a few hours later for the hearing.
The two assailants, later identified Mahesh (25), and Sundar Gulab Pandit (27), both brothers, were taken into police custody, and the two knives were recovered from their possession. They are residents of Indiranagar in Gultekdi.
According to the police, the duo’s sister Heena had committed suicide on Sunday morning at their residence, after which Chakale was arrested by Swargate police and booked for abetment to suicide.
Police said Chakale and Heena were in a relationship, but Chakale insisted that after marriage Heena would have to stay at his aunt’s home. Heena was against this suggestion and Chakale had even threatened to kill her if she didn’t agree. When Chakale finally refused to marry her, Heena hanged herself.
According to Swargate police, a case of abetment to suicide and criminal intimidation under sections 306 and 506 of the Indian Penal Code was registered against Chakale following the incident.
“Anticipating a threat to his life, we had provided sufficient security to Chakale. Some policemen were deployed in front of him when he was being escorted to court. When Chakale was about to be produced, Mahesh and Sundar attacked him. Cops foiled Sundar’s attempt, but Mahesh managed to slash Chakale with a knife,”said Senior Inspector Ram Pathare, in-charge of Swargate police station.
“Policemen successfully prevented any further attack and caught hold of Mahesh. The duo has a criminal background and their statement regarding this incident has been recorded,” Pathare added. Chakale was remanded in judicial custody when he was produced in court after receiving treatment in Sassoon hospital, said Police Inspector Pandharinath Patil of Shivajinagar police station.
In charge of court premises security, police inspector Anil Patil said, “We expect all police stations to provide us with prior intimation as to which suspect is being produced in court on a daily basis. If this information is shared with us, then only we can take sufficient preventive measures in order to avoid any untoward incident in the court premises. In normal circumstances, we have continuous patrolling in the court premises.”
Vice President of Pune Bar Association Satish Pailwan said, “A delegation will meet the Principal District Judge Anant Badar to highlight the issue of lapses in court security. We have repeatedly demanded that the police commissioner should be instructed to undertake some serious measures to increase the security in the court premises.”