With the deadline for the Mumbai police to submit its final report in the 2015 Constable Kalokhe-Baby Patankar mephedrone haul case set to end on April 2, senior crime branch officers have said that they are likely to file a closure report. Three forensic tests results had claimed that the contraband seized by the police in 2015 was, in fact, food additive sodium glutamate, popularly known as ajinomoto.
On March 2, a special NDPS court had directed the investigating officer in the case to submit a final report under section 173(2) of the Criminal Procedure Code within a month. The court direction had come after a second forensic report from the Chandigarh Central Forensic Science Laboratory ruled that the seized substance was ajinomoto.
The CFSL report was prepared on December 11, 2018, but submitted in court earlier this month, stated that the 12 samples, weighing between 4.6 and 5.8 grams, had tested positive for sodium glutamate and negative for mephedrone and other narcotic substances. Earlier, the Mumbai police had received similar reports from FSL, Kalina and CFSL, Hyderabad, with both stating that no traces of any banned drugs were found in the samples.
With the police set to file a closure report, all the accused in the case, including five policemen and an alleged drug dealer, Shashikala alias Baby Patankar, are likely to be discharged. A case of non-commercial quantity of ganja, found with one of the accused constable Dharmaraj Kalokhe, will now be probed separately.
A senior crime branch officer said , “As per law, since the seized substance is not a narcotic, the case does not stand.”
Satara police had seized 112 kg of the substance from the house of Kalokhe’s neighbour, Patankar. A day later, Mumbai police claimed to have found 12 kg more of the substance from the constable’s locker at Marine Drive police station. Kalokhe, Patankar and her son Satish, were arrested in the case. Soon after, police also arrested senior inspector Suhas Gokhale, inspector Gautam Gaikwad, sub-inspector Sudhakar Sarang, ASI Jyotiram Mane and head constable Yeshwant Parate for allegedly aiding Patankar and Satish to evade arrest.