The Bombay High Court on Friday accused the Central Bureau of Investigation of “bungling up” the inquiry into the murder of rationalist Narendra Dabholkar. It also pulled up the agency for delaying obtaining forensic reports from the United Kingdom’s Scotland Yard, saying that its work indicated that the CBI was not serious about pursuing the case, PTI reported.
“You are just bungling it up. It is your credibility at stake,” the court said, while hearing petitions filed by the families of both Dabholkar and murdered activist Govind Pansare that sought its supervision in the CBI investigation. “You should remember that this delay is affecting two trials that are ready to commence.”
The agency had earlier told the high court that the bullets and empty shells recovered from Pansare’s body and the crime scene had been sent to Scotland Yard to ascertain whether there was a link between the Dabholkar and Pansare murders. Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh, appearing for the CBI, told the bench on Friday that it was awaiting the reports from the UK, adding that they could seek an alternate opinion from the forensic lab in New Delhi. This further irked the bench, which asked why they had not sought a local opinion earlier if they had the option.
In June, the CBI had arrested Vinod Tawde, a member of right-wing group Sanathan Sastha, in the Dabholkar murder case. Dabholkar, who had been campaigning for an anti-superstition legislation in Maharashtra for years, was murdered near his Pune home in 2013. The case was handed over to the CBI in 2014, after the Mumbai Police failed to make any breakthroughs.