Four Arrested For Gauri Lankesh’s Murder, Probe Reveal Their Next Target Was Kannada Writer K S Bhagwan
May 31st, 2018
Image Credit: Gauri Lankesh
A Special Investigation Team of Karnataka police has arrested four people for plotting to kill Kannada writer and an acclaimed critic of the right wing, K S Bhagwan in Mysuru. Notably, these four persons who are linked to Sanatan Sanstha and its sister concern Hindu Janajagruti Samiti are associates of 37-yr-old K T Naveen Kumar of Hindu Yuva Sena, who was arrested for the murder of Gauri Lankesh in March.
Anmol Kale alias Bhaisab, 39, from Maharashtra, Amit Degwekar alias Pradeep, 39, from Goa, Manohar Edave, a resident of Vijayapura in Karnataka and Sujeet Kumar alias Praveen, 37 from Mangalore were allegedly planning K S Bhagwan’s murder.
On May 20, Sujeet Kumar was arrested and produced before the magistrate while the other three were arrested the next day. Reportedly, they will be in police custody until June 1.
One of the accused, Degwekar was earlier detained by Goa police for his involvement in the bomb blast but he was not charged. Amol Kale, on the other hand, is considered to be the part of several activities with a motive of creating communal tension.
After the arrest of K T Naveen Kumar on February 18 for possession of illegal arms, the probe revealed that he along with others were surveying Bhagwan’s house to kill him the same way as Gauri Lankesh was killed. K T Naveen Kumar later revealed that he received directions for killing Gauri Lankesh from Sujeet Kumar.
After executing the murder of Gauri Lankesh, Naveen was allegedly roped in by his handlers to facilitate the killing of Bhagwan around December 2017.
Senior journalist and activist Gauri Lankesh was murdered outside her residence in Rajarajeshwari Nagar, southwest Bengaluru on September 5.
She was returning from work and was parking her car outside the gate of her home when three unknown assailants on a motorcycle fired seven shots at her at around 8 pm, said the police. As she ran to the door, three bullets hit her in the head, neck and chest, while four struck the front wall of the house.
When her neighbours found her, she lay in a pool of blood. Residents of an apartment complex in front of her house where she lived alone alerted the police and cops from nearby police stations rushed to the spot. Within an hour, hundreds of people had gathered at the scene and raised slogans against communal elements even as her body was taken away for an autopsy to Victoria Hospital, reported The Times of India.
The 55-year-old journalist was the editor of the weekly tabloid magazine, Gauri Lankesh Patrike, started by her in 2005. She was vocal about her views on communalism, right-wing politics and the Hindutva brigade. Lankesh was in the forefront of efforts to bring Naxals into the mainstream and at loggerheads with Hindutva forces, including the RSS. After conviction in two defamation cases, she was out on bail.
In a 2016 interview with Newslaundry, Lankesh had said, “Modi Bhakts and the Hindutva brigade want me in jail.”
In less than a year she was cold-heartedly murdered.