Mumbai: CBI officers take Sachin Andure to spot where Dabholkar was shot dead
CBI officers take suspected shooter to Pune; agency also procures custody of three arrested in Gauri Lankesh murder case from Bengaluru
A BIKE ride, a question, and four bullets - that is all it took for arrested right-wing sympathisers Sachin Andure and Sharad Kalaksar to gun down rationalist Dr Narendra Dabholkar in 2013. Weeks after his arrest, Andure finally revealed to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) earlier this week how he and Kalaskar carried out Dabholkar's murder and escaped without a trace.
Andure was arrested for Dabholkar's murder on August 18. Revealing the sequence leading up to Dabholkar's 2013 murder in Pune, he told the CBI he and Kalaskar fired two bullets each at Dabholkar; three hit him, while one misfired. Both of them were carrying guns.
Sources in CBI said Andure has claimed that Andure has claimed that Kalaskar's bullets Dabholkar in the head, while his first bullet hit Dabholkar in the chest, and the second one misfired. As per the ballistic report, Dabholkar had suffered head and chest injuries, said Mukta, his daughter.
'Is that Dr Dabholkar?'
As per sources, Andure and Kalaskar were waiting near the Omkareshwar bridge in Pune's Shaniwarwada area, where Dabholkar was taking a morning walk. They saw a senior citizen walk up to the rationalist and greet him by his name. The duo asked the senior if the person they just spoke to was Dr Narendra Dabholkar. The senior replied in the affirmative.
Soon after the confirmation, Andure and Kalaskar walked up to Dabholkar, fired four bullets at him, and escaped. Andure said they fled on a bike arranged by Amol Kale, arrested for the murder of journalist-activist Gauri Lankesh. Kale was in Pune at the time of the murder. CBI said they would be seeking his custody at a later stage. Andure and Kalaskar took the bike till the spot where they'd decided to drop it. From there, they took a bus to Aurangabad.
CBI officials said they would be verifying the story with Kalaskar, who is currently in the Anti-Terrorism Squad's (ATS) custody in the Nalasopara-Pune arms haul case, and take him under their custody soon. They would also collect further evidence, as Andure's statement has no evidentiary value.
Akolkar and Pawar
Andure's admission goes against CBI's previous theory about Sarang Akolkar and Vinay Pawar being Dabholkar's alleged shooters, who conspired with ENT specialist Dr Virendra Tawde for the murder, who had been named prime suspect in Dabholkar's case and held for Left-wing politician Govind Pansare's murder. He is currently out on conditional bail. Akolkar and Pawar remain at large.
The agency had mentioned Akolkar and Pawar in an earlier chargesheet, where it said, "Dr Virendra Tawde criminally conspired with Vinay Pawar and Sarang Akolkar and others to murder Dr. Narendra Dabholkar and in pursuance of the said criminal conspiracy, Vinay Pawar and Sarang Akolkar shot dead Dr. Narendra Dabholkar on 20.08 2013 at about 7.25 AM at Omkareshwar Bridge, Pune."
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