Five months after his arrest,Bombay High Court Monday granted bail to real estate agent and developer Sumeet Bachewar,who was arrested for his alleged involvement in the conspiracy to murder builder Sunil Lohariya. Lohariya was shot outside his Vashi office on February 16,allegedly by arrested hitmen Venkatesh Shettiar and Wajid Qureshi.
In his dying declaration given to his son Sandeep,Lohariya had mentioned the names of Bachewar,S P Agarwal and two others – Suresh Bijlani and Anurag Garg – as suspects.
Bachewar is the second of the ten arrested in the case to secure bail. Another accused,Altaf Khan,allegedly part of two back-up teams formed by former encounter specialist Emmanuel Amolik,who was hired to kill Lohariya by the accused businessman,has also been released on bail.
Justice A M Thipsay said,The deceased and his son had suspected that the applicant (Bachewar) was behind the firing. Suspicion may be good enough for arrest,but just based on suspicion the accused cannot be detained till completion of trial.
Justice Thipsay ordered Bachewars release on bail of Rs 50,000. Justice R P Sondurbaldota dismissed an anticipatory bail application filed by Agarwal.
Meanwhile,another accused in the case,builder Suresh Bijlani,was remanded in judicial custody by a Vashi court Monday. Mumbai Police Crime Branch officers said that they would be appealing against the decision before a higher court and would also oppose any bail application filed by Bijlani.
Bijlani,who was on the run since the murder in February and had also filed for anticipatory bail,surrendered last week.