Gauri, Kalburgi killed with same weapon, states FSL report

Gauri, Kalburgi killed with same weapon, states FSL report

Lankesh, who was known for her strong anti-Hindutva stand, was shot dead in front of her house, triggering a nationwide outrage. DH Photo

The Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) report, submitted along with the charge sheet in the murder case of journalist-activist Gauri Lankesh, stated that the same country-made 7.65 mm pistol was used to kill rationalist Prof M M Kalburgi. However, in both the cases, the pistol has not been recovered.

The FSL report comprises a detailed comparison of both the murders and an analysis of ballistics such as comparison of individual characteristic marks, class characteristic marks and microstation lines. These were done under the microscopic study of bullets recovered from both the murder cases.

With the comparisons, the forensic experts have arrived at a conclusion that the bullets in both the cases were fired through the “single country-made pistol chambered for 7.65 mm calibre cartridges,” the report stated.

The FSL report, which is added in the charge sheet submitted to the III ACMM, a copy of which is available with DH, stated that: “The class characteristic marks of the firing pin on the cartridge cases in Article No 2,3,4 and 5 (the Gauri case) are tallying with the cartridge case in Article No 6 and 7 in Cr No 142/2015 (Kalburgi case) of Vidyagiri PS,” the report

It was further stated that the first bullet was fired at Gauri beyond two feet and within seven feet from the muzzle end of the pistol. Another bullet was fired at her beyond one foot and within two feet and the third bullet was fired beyond two feet and within five feet from the muzzle end of the pistol.

Description not matching

The SIT technical team probing the case has confirmed that none of the five arrested in the Gauri murder case and conspiracy to kill scholar K S Bhagwan was the shooter in the Gauri case.

The physical description of the shooter as captured on the CCTV footage at Gauri’s house did not match with the accused arrested so far, the SIT sources said.

The CCTV footage of Gauri’s house, which was sent to the FSL, showed that two men came on a bike on September 5 and one of them shot at her and they sped away.

The analysis of the CCTV footage stated that while Gauri was 5 ft 4 inches tall, the man who shot at her was around 5 ft 1 inch tall and weighed around 80 kg.

The SIT has arrested five people affiliated to Hindutva groups Sanatan Sanstha and its affiliate Hindu Janajagruti Samiti in the case. Amol Kale alias Bhaisab from Maharashtra is 6 feet tall, Manohar Edave from Vijayapura is 5 ft 10 inches, Sujeet Kumar alias Praveen from Shikaripura is 5 ft 8 inches and Amit Degwekar alias Pradeep from Goa is 5 feet, but he is slim. K T Naveen Kumar was in Mangaluru at the time of the incident. So, the police confirmed that these five were not the shooters.

However, one of the four accused arrested so far was the rider of the bike.