A GROUP of 28 farmers arrested by the state CID for allegedly lynching two ascetics and their driver in April, but not booked in the chargesheet, moved the Palghar sessions court for bail on Wednesday.
In its 5291-page chargesheet filed before a magistrate court in Dahanu, the CID booked 126 men for alleged murdering the trio and attempting to murder police personnel at Gadchinchle village on the night of April 16. Out of 154 adults it arrested, however, the CID said in its chargesheet that as it had not received photo-matching and other forensic reports before its deadline, it was yet to conclusively establish their presence at the scene of the crime.
“We cannot rule out receiving such evidence in future. A supplementary chargesheet will be filed against the 28 accused once such evidence is collected and analysed,” states the chargesheet.
In the bail application, advocate Amrut Adhikari stated, however, that the men were arrested merely on the basis of suspicion, and that they were not named in the FIR registered at Kasa police station on April 18. The application also states that the accused were not present at the forest department check post, where the lynching took place, and the CID has not found any direct or indirect evidence linking them to the crime.
Adhikari also stated in the application that police arrested 110 men four-and-a-half hours before it lodged the FIR. While the CID stated in its chargesheet that the villagers in Gadchinchle held a meeting on April 16 and decided to “teach a lesson” to the “thieves disguised as ascetics, policemen, and doctors”, the bail application claims that in the initial FIR “there is no whisper that the assailants hatched a conspiracy or that the alleged offence was the result of conspiracy”. The bail application is likely to be heard at the sessions court next week.
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