Gauri Lankesh was shot dead outside her house in South Bengaluru’s RR Nagar area on September 5, last year. A year later the special investigation team probing the case claims it has cracked the case and also possibly unravelled the link between the killing of other rationalists in Karnataka and Maharashtra. Here’s the case so far in 10 points, albeit in a reverse order.
10. Raj Bhavan Chalo rally to be held on Wednesday demanding a ban on right wing outfit Sanathana Sanstha. A host of writers, progressive thinkers, activists, politicians, left movement crusaders and Gauri’s friends and family to take part in the event on Gauri Lankesh’s first death anniversary.
9. Right-wing groups like Hindu Janajagruti Samiti too planning protest against left movement claiming that SIT is being pressurized into ‘fixing’ Sanathana Sanstha in the case. Last month, Karnataka Home Minister G Parameshwara had said that state will contemplate recommending a ban on Sanathana Sanstha if their role was proved in Gauri’s murder.
8. Forensic Gait Analysis by Gujarat FSL confirms that Parashuram Waghmore was the gunman who shot at Gauri. Shooter in the CCTV footage and SIT reconstruction of crime with Waghmore matches.
7. SIT has so far arrested 13 people and is on the lookout for more people. Many of them said to be absconding after recent arrests in Maharashtra.
6. Information by SIT leads to arrests in Maharashtra. Links to the murder of other rationalist established. The Maharashtra police arrested five people in a arms haul case. This included former Shiv Sena corporator Shrikant Pangarkar, Sharad Kalaskar, Vaibhav Raut, Sudhanwa Gondhalekar. While Pangarkar was said to be in touch with Gauri murder case mastermind Amol Kale. The SIT believes Sudhanva Gondalkar and Sharad Khalaskar were used as the backup team to kill Gauri Lankesh. They have been caught in a CCTV camera carrying out a recce.
5. The CBI believes there is a link between the killing of rationalist Narendra Dabholkar in Pune in 2013 and Gauri Lankesh murder. Seeking extension of the custody of Sachin Andure, one of the alleged shooters in the Dabholkar murder case, the CBI submitted to the court that one of the accused in the Lankesh murder case had handed over a pistol and three bullets with a magazine to him.”During Andure’s interrogation, it was revealed that one of the accused in the Lankesh murder case had handed over a 7.65 mm country-made pistol & 3 bullets to him and he had passed those over to his brother-in-law, Shubham Surale, at Aurangabad on August 11,” read CBI’s submission to the court.
4. The SIT is confident they have zeroed in on the motive. An unnamed-underground group wanted to establish a Hindu Rashtra and the members were recruited from various pro-Hindutva outfits. Mastermind in Dhabolkar murder case – Dr Virendrasinh Tawde is said to be the brain behind this idea and they decided to eliminate whoever were perceived as a roadblock to the formation of a Hindu Rashtra. Amol Kale was Tawde’s right-hand man.
3. Amole Kale is suspected to be the mastermind in Gauri Lankesh’s murder case. Kale was a former Hindu Janajagruti Samiti convener while another mastermind Amit Degwekar was a sadhak in the Sanathan Sanstha. Now the CID probing the Rationalist MM Kalburgi murder case suspects that some of these conspirators were masterminds in the assassination of Kalburgi as well. This after information shared by the special investigation team.
2. SIT believes that on September 5, at 8.09 pm, Parashuram Waghmare arrived on a black motorcycle outside Lankesh’s house. He was accompanied by one Ganesh Miskin. Waghmare shot four bullets at Gauri from point blank range. Ganesh was also carrying a gun if in case Waghmare failed to hit the target.
1. The first breakthrough in the Gauri Lankesh case came in March 2018. One KT Naveen Kumar was picked up by the crime branch on February 19 from Kempegowda bus station in Bengaluru for illegal possession of bullets – the same kind that were used in the killing of Gauri. SIT took his custody in March and the plot started to unravel.