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Mundra custodial deaths case: Man held for ‘helping’ accused cops, ex-sarpanch

With this, the number of arrests in the case of custodial deaths has gone up to three.

By: Express News Service | Rajkot |
February 12, 2021 2:59:25 am
mundra custodial deathsThe vacation bench was hearing a petition filed by a prisoner, alleging violence and victimisation at hands of jail authorities inside the prison, for transfer from Tihar Jail. (Representational Image)

A MAN was arrested and sentenced to three-day police remand for allegedly helping policemen and a former village sarpanch, who are accused in the Mundra custodial deaths case.

Narvirsinh Sarvaiya, a resident of Mundra taluka of Kutch district, was arrested by a police party from Mount Abu in Rajasthan on Wednesday and produced in a local court in Mundra Thursday, Saurabh Singh, Superintendent of Kutch (west) police said. The court sent Sarvaiya to police custody for three days.

“Sarvaiya knows all the accused in the custodial deaths case and was helping them. Therefore, he has been arrested and a court has granted us his remand for three days,” Singh told The Indian Express while refusing to specify the kind of help Sarvaiya was extending to the accused, saying that can compromise the ongoing investigation.

With this, the number of arrests in the case of custodial deaths has gone up to three.

A case of murder, custodial torture, and illegal confinement has been filed against Shaktisinh Gohil, Ashok Kannad, Jaydevsinh Jhala, Kapil Desai and Gafurji Thakor—all police constables attached to the Mundra police station of Kutch (west) police—after they allegedly picked up Arjan Gadhvi, Harjog Gadhvi and Shalma Gadhvi as suspects in a theft case in January and allegedly tortured Arjan and Harjog to death and injured Shamla.

JA Padhiyar, then police inspector of Mundra and Viral Joshi, a home guard attached to Mundra police station, were arrested on February 26 after police investigation reportedly revealed that they too had beaten the victims while the latter were confined illegally in Mundra police station. Police is also looking for Jayvirsinh Jadeja, the former sarpanch of Samaghogha village in Mundra taluka of Kutch district.

Meanwhile, the district and sessions court of Mundra on Thursday rejected an anticipatory bail application filed by Jayvirsinh. “We brought it to the notice of the honourable court that technical surveillance indicates Jayvirsinh’s role in the murders, and that the applicant’s presence has been established in police station, despite he being a civilian, when the alleged offence was committed,” Kalpesh Goswami, district government pleader of Kutch said.

Jayvirsinh’s advocates argued that he was not the one who had murdered the two men and alleged that police were framing him in the case due to a land dispute he had had with the victims. However, the court of additional sessions judge DG Rana rejected the application stating it was not a fit case for granting anticipatory bail.

Liquor seized from cops’ house

Meanwhile, Kapil Desai, one of the five accused constables, was booked under the Prohibition Act after six bottles of Indian made foreign liquor (IMFL) was recovered from his rented apartment home in Mundra during a search by Local Crime Branch of Kutch (west) police on Wednesday.

Police also seized Rs1.5 lakh in cash from Desai’s house.

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