HC examining if Dabholkar murder attracts UAPA

PTI, MUMBAI | 19 September 2013 21:18 IST

The Bombay High Court would be examining whether the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) can be invoked with regard to the murder of anti-superstition activist Dr Narendra Dabholkar.

"Only then, the court will decide whether the probe should be transferred to National Investigating Agency," said the division bench headed by Justice P V Hardas, hearing a public interest litigation seeking probe by the Central agency in the case. 

Dabholkar, a well-known rationalist, was shot dead in Pune on August 20 by unidentified persons. Police have not cracked the case yet. 

The HC today asked the petitioner Ketan Tirodkar, a former journalist, to submit a copy of bylaws under the UAPA, and scheduled the next hearing for September 24. 

Tirodkar's argument is that the case attracts UAPA, and it should be transferred to NIA which often deals with UAPA cases. 

Accusing the Pune police of carrying out a flawed probe, the PIL says that Dabholkar was receiving threats for quite some time and Maharashtra Government was aware of this.

The Pune police could have prepared a threat perception report on their own, it says. 

The government need not wait for the person's approval for providing him/her with security, it adds. 

The PIL also claims that Pune police have come across some information about possible involvement of astrology practitioners, against whom Dabholkar was about to start an agitation.

It is suspected that these people were in touch with Hindu right wing extremists who blamed Dabholkar for hurting the religious sentiments, the petition says.

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