The Maharashtra police told a city court on Monday that former Shiv Sena corporator Shrikant Pangarkar, arrested in the arms haul case, was in touch with an accused who is in custody of their Karnataka counterparts in connection with a high-profile murder case.
According to sources, the said accused is Amol Kale, arrested in connection with the killing of Gauri Lankesh, a Bengaluru-based journalist, in September last year, news agency PTI reported.
Shrikant Pangarkar and three other accused in the arms haul case — Sharad Kalaskar, Vaibhav Raut, Sudhanwa Gondhalekar — were produced before Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Padalkar after their police remand ended.
The fifth accused Avinash Pawar is in ATS custody till today.
They were arrested last month by the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) in connection with the seizure of arms and ammunition from different parts of the state.
Seeking extension of Shrikant Pangarkar’s remand, the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism SquadS told the court that it had received a report from the Karnataka police that his name was found in a diary seized from an accused who is in their custody in connection with a high-profile murder case.
The anti-terror agency also told the court that SHrikant Pangarkar was using two mobile phones. One of them had certain text messages which showed his connection with the man who is in custody of the Karnataka police.
The Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad added that it also needs to find out whether the Karnataka accused attended an arms training camp allegedly run by Shrikant Pangarkar in Jalna, his home district in central Maharashtra.
The court extended SHrikant Pangarkar’s police custody till September 6. It sent Raut and Gondhalekar to 14-day judicial custody after the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad said their police remand was not required.
It also granted the custody of Sharad Kalaskar to the CBI for investigating his alleged role in the killing of rationalist Narendra Dabholkar in 2013.