The Maharashtra Police’s Criminal Investigation Department has arrested 18 more people in the Palghar lynching case, PTI reported on Tuesday. With these arrests, the total number of people arrested is now 134. Of these, 24 have been arrested by the CID.

A police officer said that all those arrested by the CID were “actively involved in the violence and lynching”.

On the night of April 16, three Mumbai residents, who were on their way to Silvassa, were lynched by local residents in Gadakchinchale village of Palghar district on the suspicion that they were thieves. A large mob of villagers had surrounded the car of the three men and started attacking them with sticks and iron rods, leading to their deaths. Two of the victims were sadhus from Kandivali suburb in Mumbai, and the third was their driver.

On May 1, the Supreme Court ordered the Maharashtra government to submit a status report on the investigation within four weeks. A bench comprising Justices Ashok Bhushan and Sanjiv Khanna sought the report while hearing a petition accusing the police of failing to check the gathering of locals despite strict lockdown orders. The petitioners asked for the setting-up of a Supreme Court-monitored special investigation team or a judicial commission headed by a retired SC judge to probe the incident.

They also sought a CBI investigation into the matter and asked for first information reports against concerned police officials for failing to prevent the incident. They alleged that the police were complicit in the crime.