Sanatan Sanstha: ‘SIT lying about drug haul from Panvel ashram’

Abhay Vartak, spokesperson, Sanatan Sanstha, said these drugs were “medicines” prescribed by in-house medics for ‘sadhaks’ undergoing medical treatment.

Written by Natasha Trivedi | Mumbai | Published:September 10, 2016 2:50 am
sanatan sanstha, govind pansare murder, sanatan sanstha drugs, sanatan sanstha panvel ashram, sanatan sanstha sit, mumbai news, india news Sanatan Sanstha spokesperson Abhay Vartak Vartak said the government machinery was targeting saffron outfits. (Express Photo by Prashant Nadkar)

A DAY After a special investigation team probing the murder of rationalist Govind Pansare claimed to have recovered psychotropic drugs from the Sanatan Sanstha’s ashram in Panvel, the hardline Hindutva outfit Friday denied allegations that these were being used as sedatives to control the minds of the ‘sadhaks’, or followers.

Abhay Vartak, spokesperson, Sanatan Sanstha, said these drugs were “medicines” prescribed by in-house medics for ‘sadhaks’ undergoing medical treatment. On Thursday, the SIT had raided the Panvel ashram as part of its investigations. Pansare, who belonged to the Communist Party of India, was shot dead on February 20, 2015. The police have so far arrested Dr. Virendra Tawde, a member of the Hindu Janjagruti Samiti, as a main conspirator in the case.

The Sanstha has claimed that even this arrest was motivated. On Friday, Vartak said the government machinery was targeting saffron outfits. On the drug overhaul claims of the SIT, Vartak rubbished the accusations that these were banned substances.

“Since many sadhaks are unable to afford medical facilities, the ashram provides free-of-cost in house dispensary. The ashram stocks a range of medicines to cater to the sadhaks.The sedatives mentioned by the SIT are in fact drugs that are used to relieve the pain of some ailing patients.

All these drugs have been duly prescribed by doctors,” Vartak said. “The ashram maintains a record of all the drugs stocked.” The Sanstha has alleged that the drug theory was planted since the investigators found nothing incriminating during the raid.