Kolhapur Sessions Court rejects discharge application of accused in Comrade Govind Pansare murder case

Prosecution says documents on record show it was deep rooted conspiracy & the accused committed the murders of Comrade Govind Pansare, Dr Narendra Dabholkar, Kalburgi, Gauri Lankesh in a planned way

File photo of Comrade Pansare
File photo of Comrade Pansare

Nadeem Inamdar

Khapur Sessions Judge B D Shelke has held that there was ample material on record against ENT Surgeon Dr Virendrasingh Sharadchandra Tawde and Sachin Prakashrao Andure, in the murder of Comrade Govind Pansare in 2015. Tawade, the leader of the right-wing group Hindu Janjagruti Samiti and Andure, the alleged main shooter in the murder of rationalist Dr Narendra Dabholkar had applied for discharge under section 227 of Code of Criminal Procedure ( CrPC).

The order stated “However, I do not find much substance in these arguments advanced on behalf of Tawade. In the present case at hand there is no reference to Section 499 of IPC. After going through the provisions of Section 195 and 196 of the Cr.P.C. It reveals that in present case both these provisions are not attracted as the accused in present case have not been prosecuted for the offences against the State and for criminal conspiracy to commit such offences against the State. Therefore, the provisions of Section 195 or 196 of Cr.P.C. as well as Section 39 of Arms Act would not attract in the present case. The material placed on record suffices to hold that there is sufficient material on record and there are sufficient grounds for proceeding against the accused for the charges levelled on Tawade and Andure . I have already discussed the material which is against Tawade and Andure herein above and the same is not required to be repeated once again. Hence, I am of the view that there are no grounds to discharge the accused Tawade and Andure from this case as contended by these applicants. Hence, I answered point No. 1 ( Whether there are no sufficient grounds for proceeding against the accused No. 2 and 10 for the charges levelled on them?) in the negative. ”

Both Dr Tawade and Andure further contended that the supplementary charge sheet is not in consonance or alignment of the primary charge sheet as it does not show further investigation. Instead it shows reinvestigation which is not permissible in law. Further as per their contention. the prosecution cannot pick and choose one theory over the other. There is no sufficient evidence in the present case against them to connect them with the alleged crime. Further as per their contention, mere suspicion, however strong is not enough to prosecute a person hence they prayed for discharging them from this case.

The prosecution has resisted these applications. The sum and substance of the reply of prosecution is that both these accused had complicity in the crime against them. The statements of witnesses clearly demonstrate the motive and intention of the accused. The statements of witnesses and documents came on record clearly demonstrate that the accused in tandem with other co-accused hatched the plan to commit the murder of Comrade Govind Pansare. How they hatched the plan and executed it has been clearly stated by the witnesses in their statements recorded by the Investigation agency. There is ample prima facie evidence and material on record with regard to the complicity of both these accused in the crime registered against them. Thus, as per contention of the prosecution, both applications are liable to be rejected, the court order stated.

The Special Public Prosecutor (SPP) Harshad Nimbalkar vehemently argued before the court that the maximum evidence is against accused Tawade being a conspirator. The final report and accompanying documents clearly demonstrate the complicity of all the accused in the crime registered against them, thus there is no basis to the argument advanced on behalf of the accused that it is re-investigation.

He submitted that section 173 (8) of Code of Criminal Procedure permits further investigation. Accordingly further investigation has been conducted and it was monitored by the Division Bench of the High Court. Progress in the investigation was communicated to the High Court from time to time. The evidence came on record demonstrates that the incident took place on Feb 16,2015 at about 9.30 a.m., two unknown persons came on motorcycle and fired shots on comrade Govind Pansare and his wife Uma Pansare. When Comrade Pansare was under treatment he succumbed to the injuries on Feb 20.

Uma Pansare recovered from the injuries sustained by her. The documents on record clearly demonstrate that it was a deep rooted conspiracy and the accused have committed the murders of Comrade Govind Pansare, Dr. Narendra Dabholkar, Mr. Kalburgi, Gauri Lankesh in a well planned manner. The documents placed on record clearly demonstrate that there was litigation between Sanatan Santha and Comrade Govind Pansare. Nimbalkar further submitted that the accused Tawade was follower of Sanatan Sanstha and was active worker of Hindu Jan Jagruti Samiti and was appointed as a organizer in State of Maharashtra. Virendra Tawde was the king pin. He had assigned different roles to the different accused in commission of this crime.

The statement of witness Sanjay Sadvilkar shows that this accused had scuffled with Dr. Narendra Dabholkar. The documents recovered from the possession of Dr Tawade show that Dr Narendra Dabhokar and Comrade Govind Pansare were evils in the eye of Sanatan Sanstha. In regard to conspiracy the documents seized from the possession of accused Dr Virendra Tawde show that he was in contact with accused Sarang Akolkar. The copies of Email sent to each other by accused Sarang Akolkar and Virendra Tawde have been seized from the possession of this accused. The documents on record show that this accused Dr Tawade procured the weapons for commission of crime. He also provoked other accused to commit the murders. He also arranged training of firing and bomb blast for the other co-accused. He procured the weapons for committing the offences, the order states.

The Special P P further submitted that there is also sufficient material to proceed against Sachin Andure. He is originally a resident of Aurangabad and he was also an active worker of Hindu Jan Jagruti Samiti. He was working against Love Jihad and was follower of Sanathan Dharma Sadhana and was in constant contact with accused Virendra Tawde since 2009.

He was working along with accused Amol Kale. The object of committing crime by these accused is laid down in the book Kshatra Dharma Sadhna. As per the objectives of this book, killing a person is not sin. As per their objectives the persons who were acting against Sanathan Dharma Sadhana were evils (Durjan) and therefore, they decided to kill them, he added.

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