CBI struggles with Dabholkar case

Maharashtra yet to act on its request for hands to find rationalist’s killers

August 15, 2015 11:53 pm | Updated December 04, 2021 11:22 pm IST - MUMBAI:

Narendra Dabholkar,

Narendra Dabholkar,

More than a year after the Central Bureau of Investigation took over the case of murder of Narendra Dabholkar, a rationalist who spearheaded an anti-superstition movement in Maharashtra, the agency faces a shortage of hands. Its requests for more officers have been pending with the State government.

Dabholkar was shot dead in Pune on August 20, 2013, while out on his morning walk. As the police could not arrest the culprits, the Bombay High Court handed over the investigation to the CBI in May 2014.

A State Home Department source said the CBI wrote to it seeking six officers on deputation in the last week of July and again in the first week of August. The agency had raised the issue with the State government earlier as well.

The CBI team refused to comment on the issue.

Additional Chief Secretary (Home) K.P. Bakshi said the department had received the requests. “I have personally spoken to CBI officials and I am aware of the situation. We will ensure that more hands are provided to the CBI,” he told The Hindu . The entire process may take 20 to 25 days as officers have to be selected and relieved from their present duty. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said that his government would provide more hands if needed. “We want a speedy probe and if the CBI wants, we will give them officers,” he told The Hindu .

The source said the staff shortage had affected the CBI investigation even in the initial stage. The CBI team refused to comment on the issue.

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