Cops film bikers who resemble Dabholkar assassins

Published: 24 October, 2013 02:04 IST | SALIL URUNKAR |

So far, the police have filmed and questioned 52 of the 3,000 bikers they have zeroed in on; motorcyclists short-listed after registration number of their vehicles matched with that of the bike used by the activist's killers

In their quest to nail Dr Narendra Dabholkar’s killers, officials of the Crime Branch are filming motorcycle owners with registration number similar to that of the motorbike used by the two unidentified shooters on the day of Dabholkar’s assassination. 

So far, the police have identified more than 3,000 motorcycle owners in the state, and have commenced the  task of summoning them for questioning.

Based on the information provided by witnesses, CCTV footage and primary investigations, investigating officials asserted that ‘7756’ was the registration number of the motorcycle the killers used for committing the crime.

Eliminating suspects: Bikes with registration number ‘7756’ parked on the premises of the police commissionerate, after their owners were called in for questioning 

Based on these inputs, the police sought details of all motorcycles in the state having similar numbers with different series.

Assistant Commissioner of Police (Crime) Rajendra Bhamare, who is also the investigating officer in the case, said, “We are doing this to ensure that no stone is left unturned during the investigation of this case.”

1) Police officials go through the websites of various RTOs in the state to scearch for motorcycles that have registration number ‘7756’ 

Another police official, who is part of the investigating team, said that they have questioned and filmed over 50 vehicle owners.

“These people were called in for questioning. As and when we felt that their faces bore slightest resemblance with the sketch of the suspects, we filmed them.

2) They then summon the owner of the vehicle to the police commissionerate and match his picture with that of the accused in the murder case

Statements have been recorded and these persons have been asked to remain available whenever we ask them to report the next time.

The exercise is being carried out on the police commissionerate premises. In some cases, the ownership of these motorbikes has changed hands without proper documentation.

3) If the picture of the motorcycle owner matches with the sketch of the suspects, police officials videograb of the motorcyclist and ask him to report to the police commissionerate whenever summoned. Illustration/Amit Bandre

But this hasn’t deterred us and we aretracing each and every person having the registration number ‘7756’. We don’t want to leave anything to chance. For us, everyone is a suspect,” the official said.

The murder
Dr Dabholkar, the rationalist and founder of Maharashtra Andhashraddha Nirmoolan Samiti, was shot dead by two unidentified men on August 20 on the Maharshi Vitthal Ramji Shinde Bridge near Omkareshwar Temple in Shaniwar Peth.  

Probe progress
>> Around 200 policemen have been investigating the case for the last two months. they have formed teams that are probing the case independently from
all possible angles
>> Over 700 history-sheeters have been questioned. Also, questioning of inmates lodged in different jails across the state for cases such as use of firearms and other serious offences like murder and so on
>> CCTV footage available from different locations and at entry and exit points of the city, including toll plazas, has been scrutinised to trace the movement of the killers before and after the crime
>> A number of activists working for hardline Hindu organisations have also been questioned about their whereabouts at the time of the murder
>> Parking lots at railway stations, malls and multiplexes have been searched twice, as some officials believe that the suspects may have abandoned their
vehicle after fleeing the crime scene. But police have failed to get leads from these search operations  

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