Published: Sun, March 11, 2018
Global | By Enrique Rogers

Gauri Lankesh murder: SIT makes first arrest

Gauri Lankesh murder: SIT makes first arrest

Kumar's arrest is seen as the first major breakthrough by the SIT which has so far been unable to make any substantial progress in a case that made national and global headlines.

Gauri Lankesh, 55, was shot down with a 7.65 mm country made pistol in the drive way of her home in west Bengaluru on the evening of September 5, 2017.

According to police sources, Naveen Kumar had close links with several radical Hindu outfits and was reportedly angry with Lankesh for "insulting" Hindu gods and goddesses. "That number is given at the time of charge sheet".

Naveen, a right-wing leader from Maddur in Mandya district, was taken into custody by the Central Crime Branch sleuths on February 18 from the Kempegowda Bus stand.

Naveen, who is also called as Hotte Manja, was taken into custody by the SIT with regard to questioning on Gauri Lankesh murder case. Kumar has been in SIT custody since March 2. Naveen's arrest is the first in the Lankesh murder case, and comes days after state Home Minister Ramalinga Reddy said the SIT would soon clear the air about the suspect who had been taken into custody.

Meanwhile, the public prosecutor sought permission to subject Kumar to a narco analysis test as he is not forthcoming with information.

The court is expected to pass an order on this on March 15.

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Sources in the police said Naveen had given voluntary statements to the SIT during interrogation of his links to the murder.

A senior police officer said Kumar had conspired with his associate to kill Bhagwan.

Lankesh, the Editor of "Lankesh Patrike", was shot dead by an unidentified man wearing a helmet while the suspect who rode the motorcycle was also not identitfied.

Naveen hails from Birur, Chikkamagalur in Karnataka.

The Sanatan Sanstha was, earlier, accused of the murder by a renowned atheist.

It is believed that Naveen and his brother started the Sene after a brief interaction with the Bajrang Dal, as it was said that they wanted to create a separate base of their own.

It is suspected that Naveen provided logistics to the killer by conducting a recce around Lankesh's house on September 3 and 5 a year ago.

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