Kalburgi murder: CBI may seek Scotland Yard help

Kalburgi murder: CBI may seek Scotland Yard help

With forensic laboratories in Mumbai and Bengaluru differing on the ballistics report of the weapon linked to the murders of rationalist Dr Narendra Dabholkar, Marxist leader and activist Comrade Govind Pansare and Kannada writer Prof M M Kalburgi, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is considering  a third opinion from Scotland Yard

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The Forensic Science Laboratory (FSI) in Mumbai and Bengaluru had differed in their reports, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Monday told a division bench of the Bombay High Court headed by Justice R V More and comprising Justice V L Achiliya.

“We are considering seeking third opinion on the ballistic reports from experts in Scotland Yard. This would take at least two months,” CBI senior counsel Anil Singh said.

While the FSL-Bengaluru  was of the opinion that different weapons were used in the murders, the FSL-Kalina in Mumbai opined that the weapon used in all the three cases was the same. The CBI, probing the Dabholkar case, and the state CID, which is investigating the Pansare murder case, submitted investigation reports in the court on Monday. The bench, after perusing the reports, said the investigation was at a crucial stage and both the agencies were making sincere efforts.

Advocate Abhay Nevgi, appearing for the kin of Dabholkar and Pansare, demanded that the probe be transferred to the National Investigation Agency (NIA). The court, however, noted that the CBI was in touch with the NIA and hence there was no need to hand over the probe to the latter at this stage. The court posted the petition for hearing on February 29 and sought progress reports from the CBI and the CID.

Dr Narendra Dabholkar, 67, rationalist and anti-superstition activist, Maharashtra Andhashraddha Nirmoolan Samiti (MANS), was shot dead on June 20, 2013,  by two unidentified gunmen near Omkareshwar temple in Pune. Comrade Govind Pansare, 82, a rationalist and leader of Communist Party of India, 82, and his wife, Uma were attacked by two motorcycle-borne youths on February 16, 2015, near his home in Kolhapur, and he died four days later on February 20, 2015, at the Breach Candy Hospital in Mumbai.  Prof M M Kalburgi, 76, noted scholar and writer, had run-ins with right-wing Hindutva groups over the years, was shot dead on August 30, 2015, by unidentified gunman at the former's residence in the Kalyan Nagar locality of Dharwad.

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