Superintendent of Police, Palghar asked to go on ‘forced leave’ by Maharashtra govt

The state CID is now investigating the Palghar lynching case in which two sadhus were killed

PalgharImage Courtesy:mumbaimirror

Three weeks after three people, including two sadhus were lynched by villagers in Palghar, the Superintendent of Police, Gaurav Singh was on Thursday sent on forced leave by the Maharashtra government, reported The Indian Express.

In the incident which took place on April 16, so far 110 villagers, including nine minors, have been arrested. Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deskhmukh on Thursday visited the Gadhchinchle village in Palghar where the incident took place. He was accompanied by state DGP Subodh Jaiswal and officers from the state CID headed by Inspector General Niket Kaushik which is now investigating the matter. A preliminary inquiries report was also submitted to the DGP on Wednesday.

In a video, Deshmukh said, “I met the elected representatives and locals there to understand the reason behind the incident. After listening to them, the government has decided that Palghar SP Gaurav Singh be sent on forced leave and additional SP Palghar be given the charge in the interim.”





Earlier, five policemen from the Kasa police station, under whose jurisdiction the incident took place, including the in-charge, were suspended, while 35 were transferred. 

“An Assistant sub-inspector and two head constables of Kasa police station have been suspended in Palghar lynching case. Two police inspectors have already been suspended in the case. Thirty cops were transferred yesterday,” ANI reported quoting a statement from Palghar Police.

According to sources, Deshmukh was informed that the police was aware of the rumour mongering in the area about child lifters on the prowl. An official said, “It was believed that if strict action had been taken to curb the rumour mongering, the lynching could have been avoided.”

On the condition of anonymity, an official speaking to The Times of India said, “The preliminary report has stated the failure of these suspended policemen to prevent the triple murder. They are guilty of dereliction of duty and hence, a departmental inquiry been recommended against them.

It was also reported that Deshmukh received various applications from the families of several accused, saying they were wrongly arrested by the police. However, Deshmukh told them that he would wait for the CID to complete its enquiry.

According to TOI, sources said a departmental probe would mean lighter punishment, like stoppage of increments and non-lucrative postings. Questions are also being raised as to why the cops who were seen almost surrendering to the mob, shouldn’t be booked for murder.

On April 16, the two ‘saadhus’ and their driver were on their way to Silvassa to attend a funeral. When they were crossing Palghar district, tribals allegedly surrounded their vehicle in Gadhchinchale and the men were lynched. It is said that the attackers suspected the men of being thieves. When police tried to rescue the men, even they were injured seriously.

The victims, identified as two sadhus of the Juna Akhara, Chike Maharaj Kalpavruksh Giri (70) and Sushilgiri Maharaj (35) were seen wearing saffron dhotis and kurtas in the video of the incident that was being circulated. They were identified as being from an ashram in Kandivali who were travelling to attend a funeral. The third victim was Nilesh Telgade (30), the driver of the van they were travelling in.

Few days into the incident, the matter took a communal color with mainstream media channels accusing the Congress government of silence over the issue because two sadhus were killed. However, everyone from state home minister Anil Deshmukh and CM Uddhav Thackeray denied there being a communal angle to the story. Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh released on Twitter names of all the 101 accused arrested in the case, pointing out that not even one of them was Muslim. 


Palghar lynching case: Maha Home Minister releases list of accused, says none are Muslim
101 adults arrested, 9 minors detained in Palghar lynching case
Palghar lynch mob accuses three men of theft, kills them




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