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Man accused of killing journalist escapes from police custody en route to Pune

The initial probe revealed that Rohidas Datir had an ongoing dispute with Kanhu Gangaram More, over a property.

By: Express News Service | Pune |
Updated: August 29, 2021 8:13:37 pm
The accused told the police that he wanted to use the washroom and escaped from there.

A 42-year-old man accused of kidnapping and murdering an RTI activist and journalist in Rahuri town fled from a government hospital in Ahmednagar on Saturday evening, when he was being shifted to Pune for treatment of kidney stone after testing Covid positive.

The man has been identified as Kanhu Gangaram More, who is a real estate dealer from Rahuri town of Ahmednagar district. More was arrested by the police in connection with the kidnapping and murder of 48-year-old journalist and RTI activist Rohidas Datir in the first week of April. After being kidnapped, Datir’s body was found at a secluded place on the premises of a college in Rahuri.

The initial probe revealed that Datir had an ongoing dispute with More, over a property. Sometime after the brutal killing of Datir, who worked for a weekly magazine, police had arrested More. On August 16, More was admitted to a government hospital in Ahmednagar for the treatment of his kidney stone.

“While being treated for kidney stone, More recently tested positive for Covid-19 and was on Saturday being shifted to Pune for further treatment. Around 5 pm, when an ambulance for him was getting ready, he told the police guards on duty that he wanted to use the washroom and is believed to have fled from there. An immediate search of the premises and surrounding areas was launched once it came to light that he was missing, but he could not be found.” said an officer from Ahmednagar police.

An extensive manhunt has been launched for More with multiple teams being part of the search effort, police officials said.

After he went missing, Datir’s wife Savita lodged a complaint of kidnapping at the Rahuri police station, after which the police launched a probe. Examination of the videos captured by some of the CCTV cameras in the area showed that an SUV used by the accused to kidnap Datir belonged to More. Subsequently More and his accomplices were arrested. According to the complaint lodged by his wife, Datir had received threats and had even been attacked prior to his abduction and killing.

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