The Central Crime Branch (CCB) sleuths probing the murder of gangster Lakshmana found that he had 23 properties in his name in the city and many other benami properties in Maddur, Tavarekere and other places. It was also found that he was in joint ownership with Harish Sanjeevappa alias Moote Harish.
Harish’s daughter Varshini, a post-graduate student at the UK’s Cambridge University, was arrested on Tuesday in connection with the case. The police had found that Lakshmana (45) fell in love with Varshini (21), who he knew from childhood. But Varshini was in a relationship with another man, which didn’t go down well with Lakshmana.
Lakshmana’s wife Chaitra N told police that her husband, Harish and another person (Kalegowda) had purchased some land in Tavarekere near Magadi which is worth crores of rupees. They paid Kalegowda, after which he was removed from the partnership.
Lakshmana wanted to settle the amount with Harish too, so that he could transfer the land entirely in his name. In fact, after he was released from prison 15 days before his murder, Lakshmana had told his wife that he would be relieved if the settlement was over.
The CCB police are investigating the involvement of Harish and wife Padma in the case. Varshini is the second accused in the case. She had passed on information about Lakshmana’s whereabouts to the assailants on the day of his murder. Lakshmana was hacked to death in broad daylight on March 7.
The police are examining the call records of Varshini and Lakshmana from his mobile phone. It is learnt that Lakshmana used to drag Varshini into intimate conversation, and Varshini, in turn, demanded money in the range of Rs 3,000 to Rs 1 lakh. She used to call him ‘muddu’.
Chaitra told police that she knew Varshini from her childhood, and she used to call Lakshmana “uncle”. But Chaitra noticed some changes in her behaviour in the last two years, and had warned her. Varshini told her that theirs was a father-daughter relationship, but Chaitra again found them drifting to private talk and warned her again.
Chaitra said Varshini left for London four months ago, but returned on the New Year’s Eve. She is said to have again left Bengaluru on January 22, but Chaitra doubts Varshini stayed back in the city and hatched a plan to eliminate Lakshmana.