Not enough witnesses against Palande, Sud?

Apr 28, 2012, 06:41 IST | Shiva Devnath

Cops revealed that though 15 witnesses had given statements against the accused implicating them in the murders of Arun Tikku and Karan Kakkad, more were needed to create a reliable body of evidence

Mumbai Crime Branch officers fear that they don’t yet have a sufficient number of eyewitnesses to build a rock-solid case against the four accused — Vijay Palande, Simrin Sud, Manoj Gajkosh and Dhanjay Shinde — in the double murder cases of Karan Kakkad and Arun Tikku. Officers of the department revealed that they have secured 15 witnesses for both the cases, which they believe is an insufficient number. They are now looking for more witnesses against the accused, to make their case stronger. “We are tracing more witnesses in both the cases, to nail Palande and Sud,” said an officer.

The accused: Vijay Palande (in red) and Simrin Sud. File pics

Sud, who had been held for her involvement in the Karan Kakkad murder case, was arrested yesterday for her suspected role in the murder of Delhi-based businessman Tikku. Crime Branch sources also accepted that Palande and his accomplices were hardened criminals who had left very little evidence in their wake, making it difficult for cops to put together a sufficiently strong body of evidence. After the duration of her police custody for the Kakkad murder case came to an end yesterday, Sud was produced in court. The magistrate remanded her in police custody till May 10 for her involvement in the Tikku murder case.

Honey trap
Crime Branch officers confirmed that Sud had accompanied Palande and Anuj Tikku to the Chiplun farmhouse where Anuj was kept captive, after his drink was spiked. “Sud’s involvement has been established in both the murders and we are now investigating her exact role in the actual crime,” said a Crime Branch officer. Cops added that they weren’t ruling out more arrests in the case.

Flesh racket
In another shocking revelation related to the murders, officers exposed that prior to his murder, Kakkad ran a prostitution racket in Mumbai. Meanwhile, Palande, who was initially arrested for the murder of Delhi-based businessman Tikku, was also remanded to police custody till May 10 for the Kakkad murder case. Palande had been arrested on April 10 for the April 7 murder of 67-year-old Tikku. On the same day, he had escaped from police custody before being re-arrested hours later. The court also extended the period of police custody for Palande’s two accomplices Gajkosh and Shinde till May 10. 

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