NCP leaders, rationalists on arrested Hindu right-wing activists 'hit-list': ATS

Maharashtra ATS informed court about the alleged hit-list of the recently arrested Hindu right-wing activists in connection with the Palghar arms seizure case.

Published: 31st August 2018 09:00 PM  |   Last Updated: 01st September 2018 01:18 AM   |  A+A-

Maharashtra ATS

Image of representation | Members of Maharashtra’s anti-terrorism squad raid the house of Sanatan Sanstha member Vaibhav Raut at Nalasopara in Palghar. (File | PTI)

By Express News Service

MUMBAI: In a startling revelation before the Sessions Court here on Friday, the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) said that rationalist Narendra Dabholkar's daughter Mukta, rationalist Shyam Manav and former Maharashtra finance minister Ajit Pawar, among others, were on the hit-list of suspected ultra right-wing Hindu activists arrested in connection with Nalasopara arms haul.

Avinash Pawar (30) was arrested by the ATS under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act from Ghatkopar in suburban Mumbai last week. When he was produced before the court for extension of his custody, additional sessions judge Vinod Padalkar read out the case diary, which mentioned that Pawar had carried out reconnaissance of several persons who were on the target list of a radical Hindu group for speaking against the religion.

While the ATS demanded his custody for 14 days, the court granted them his custody till September 4.

The ATS told the court that Pawar had carried out reconnaissance of several people, including Mukta Dabholkar, social activist Shyam Manav, NCP leader Ajit Pawar as well as MLA Jitendra Avhad and a few others who were on his target list for speaking against Hindu religion. The court, however, pointed out that there were several loose ends in the ATS case and said that the agency had not submitted all details pertaining to the investigation in the remand application or the case diary.

"Do not come to the court half-heartedly. The court cannot compromise with the accused person's rights," the judge said.

Vaibhav Raut, Sudhanwa Gondhalekar, Sharad Kalaskar, Shrikant Pangarkar and Avinash Pawar were arrested by the ATS and booked under UAPA, IPC, Explosive Substances Act and Explosives Act. The four accused are in ATS custody till September 4. ATS had earlier claimed that the accused were suspected right-wing activists and had planned to target a western music concert in Pune last year.

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