June 29, 2021 1:20:37 am
THE National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Monday claimed that two accused arrested in connection with Mansukh Hiran’s murder had travelled outside India after the crime.
Satish Mothkuri, who had allegedly smothered Hiran, and Manish Soni, who was driving the car in which the murder purportedly took place, had left the country to evade suspicion, the NIA told the court. On return, the probe agency claimed, the men had visited several places within the country as well and said it required to take the duo to these places for further probe.
“We want to find out (from) where these accused got the funds to travel to put together a trail of money. We also want to find out where they had received a huge amount of cash from. The personal belongings of Hiran are missing and the article used for smothering him is also yet to be recovered,” NIA prosecutor Sunil Gonsalves told the court while seeking their custody for five more days.
He added there are certain missing links in the alleged conspiracy which will fall in place with a deeper probe. Gonsalves told the court that revealing the locations would hamper the probe but said that they were mentioned in the case diary for the court’s perusal.
Advocate Rahul Arote, representing Mothkuri and Soni, said the NIA had given identical grounds for remand when the men were arrested on June 17. He added that Soni is a businessman and deals in garments for which he used to frequently travel abroad.
The information regarding Soni’s travel, Arote said, could be ascertained through his passport and did not require custodial interrogation.
After hearing the submissions, the court sent the two men to NIA’s custody till July 1. Retired police officer Pradeep Sharma along with two others, Anand Jadhav and Santosh Shelar, who are also in the agency’s custody till July 1, has been sent to judicial custody till July 12.
So far, 10 persons have been arrested in the case. The NIA claims Hiran was murdered on March 4 and his body was thrown into a creek.
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