The investigation officer in the Narendra Dabholkar murder case Monday filed an affidavit before the court saying the police had “not deliberately avoided” filing chargesheet against the two accused — arms dealer Manish Nagori and Vikas Khandelwal — arrested for allegedly supplying the weapon used in the crime.
Police had arrested the duo, both residents of Ichalkaranji in Kolhapur district, on January 20, but failed to file the chargesheet against them within the stipulated period of 90 days.
On April 21, while granting bail to the two, Judicial Magistrate (First Class) A B Shaikh had asked the investigating officer, Assistant Commissioner of Police (Crime) Rajendra Bhamre, to explain within seven days as to why action should not be taken against him for failing to file the chargesheet.
Accordingly, the officer filed his affidavit on Monday.
Public prosecutor Madhav Poul said: “The affidavit states that the police have not deliberately avoided filing chargesheet against the two accused. Police have incriminating evidence against them in the form of the weapon, which was used for committing the crime. But the main conspirators and other accomplices are not yet traced. So the police are unable understand their role and fix charges against the two accused. The chargesheet will be filed when there is further progress in the investigation.”
Anti-superstition activist Dr Narendra Dabholkar was shot dead by two unidentified persons on the morning of August 20, 2013, on the bridge near Omkareshwar temple in Pune. According to the police, when Nagori and Khandelwal were arrested by the Thane police from Mumbra on August 20 2013, the day of the murder, they had recovered three firearms from Khandelwal, which were supplied to him by Nagori. The police said the ballistic analysis of the three weapons showed that one pistol matched with the bullets recovered from Dabholkar’s body. The defence had vehemently denied this theory saying it was impossible that the weapon used for the murder could have reached back to them in Mumbra within a couple of hours.