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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Cops to re-open case of ‘accidental death’ on Eastern Freeway

Family of the two victims have appealed to police as there were doubts on the circumstances leading to their death

Written by Gautam Sandip Mengle | Mumbai | Updated: April 13, 2015 12:00:22 am

More than a year after two young men in their twenties were found dead on the Eastern Freeway – believed to have died in a road accident due to overspeeding – the Mumbai Police Crime Branch will be re-investigating their deaths, as their family members have alleged that they were murdered.

In September 2013, Satish Ghatvisave (22) and Deepak Rajguru (23) were found with multiple injuries on the Eastern Freeway, a short distance before the Freeway meets the P D’Mello road.

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Ghatvisave, who was riding the bike, was found with his head severed, while Rajguru, too, had sustained multiple injuries. The duo were found by a patrolling unit of the Dongri police, and they were rushed to the JJ Hospital where they were declared dead before admission. The Dongri police had at the time registered a case against Ghatvisave for causing his own as well as Rajguru’s death due to rash and negligent driving.

“The families of both the deceased had appealed to superior officers, alleging that Ghatvisave’s head could not have been severed in an accident, and that they suspected that both the boys had been murdered and their bodies discarded on the Freeway to make them look like accident victims. We received instructions to investigate the case once again in the beginning of April, and the Unit I will be probing the case,” said a Crime Branch officer.

Another officer said that the families of the deceased had named three of their friends as suspects. “Ghatvisave and Rajguru, along with three other friends, had visited the Lalbaugcha Raja Ganesh temple and were going to Chembur, where they all stay. As the Freeway had just been thrown open for the public at the time, they decided to use it out of curiosity. At 2:00 am, when the accident occurred, there were no police personnel and hence they were able to traverse the freeway unhindered. Their three friends, in their statements, had at the time given statements saying they reached the P D’Mello road and were waiting for the duo, when they heard a loud thud and went over to investigate. The families of the deceased, however, have expressed suspicion that the trio killed the deceased,” said the officer.

All the five youths headed their own bands, which played at weddings and other functions, and officers said that their families, in their allegations, have said that there were several disputes between them, which might have led to the murder.

The Crime Branch will soon start summoning all concerned parties to record detailed statements from them, and will also seek expert opinion on whether their deaths could have been murders. “The contentious point is Ghatvisave’s beheading. The Dongri police had at the time sought expert opinion from a panel of doctors on whether a man could be beheaded in an accident, and had received a report stating that it was possible if the motorist in question was travelling at a very high speed. We will be seeking a separate opinion on this point,” said the officer.

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