Dhule lynching case: 10 accused get bail!

In a shocking incident on July 1, 2018, five people were lynched by a mob after coming across a whatsapp message that accused them of being ‘child-lifters’. Now, in an even more shocking turn of events, the Bombay High Court granted bail to 9 of the accused saying they were not accused of the actual crime of lynching. One more person was granted bail by the Dhule Sessions Court on grounds of parity with others.

Image Courtesy: ANI

The Bombay High Court granted bail to Siddharth Gangurde, Kishor Pawar, Ajit Gangurde, Raju Gavali, Sukmal Kambade, Rajaram Raut, Chunnilal Malich, Bandu Sable and Gulab Gaikwad.

The order reportedly says, “…The allegations have been made against them (applicants granted bail) to the effect that they have obstructed the police party, which arrived at village Rainpada, while entering the gram panchayat office where those five persons were confined and subjected to continuous beating by co-accused… there are no allegations about their involvement in the actual commission of crime.”

Another accused Dipak Gangurde was granted bail by the Dhule Sessions Court on grounds of parity with others.

It appears that it was the prosecution may have unwittingly led to the granting of bail as they only objected to bail for the above accused stating that they had obstructed the police party, which was a “specific overt act” in the commission of the crime. Interestingly though, the prosecution also says that eyewitnesses had named the said accused.

Brief background of the case
The lynching sent shivers down the spine when 5 members of Nath Panthi Davari Gosavi, a nomadic community of fortune tellers who relied on begging for alms as a means of sustenance, were killed by a mob, which subsequently also proceeded to intimidate policemen!

The people lynched were identified as Bharat Shankar Bhosale (45), his brother, Dadarao Shankar Bhosale, Raju Bhosale, and Bharat Malwe (47), all hailing from Khave village in Solapur’s Mangalvedhe tehsil, and Anagu Ingole from Manewadi village in Mangalvedhe. Police said they were bludgeoned to death by a mob in Rainpada village of Sakri tehsil in Dhule district.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had announced compensation of Rs 5 lakh for families of the deceased and promised that the matter would be tried by a fast track court.

A total of 35 people were arrested by the Pimpalner police. Key accused Maharu Pawar was arrested on July 4, just three days after the lynching from neighbouring Nandurbar along with another accused Hiralal Gawli. Another accused Dashrath Timbalke was arrested a week after the lynching. It is alleged that he was clearly visible assaulting the victims in video clips taken by bystanders. 40 such video clips were collected by the police.

The state government had appointed Ujjwal Nikam as Special Public Prosecutor to argue the case before the trial court. Chargesheet has been filed against 28 accused.





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