Amravati: Accused Got Bike, Rs 10k to Kill Chemist; All 7 Suspects Held by NIA
The police have said that the mastermind gave the accused the cash to carry out the murder.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) took over the custody of all the seven accused in the murder of Amravati-based chemist Umesh Kolhe over a social media post supporting Nupur Sharma, a police official said on Tuesday, 5 July.
The NIA took custody of all the accused, who were granted four days' transit remand on Monday after they were produced before an Amravati court, the official said.
The accused are likely to be produced before the NIA's Mumbai court on or before 8 July, the official added.
Speaking on the investigation so far, police said two motorcycles and three knives used in the crime were recovered from the accused. Police Commissioner Arti Singh said the mastermind of the crime Irfan Khan, who was arrested, had paid Rs 10,000 and a motorcycle to the accused.
Earlier, sections 16 (punishment for terrorist act), 18 (punishment for conspiracy) and 20 (punishment for being member of terrorist gang or organisation) of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) were applied against the accused, The Indian Express reported.
The seven accused are Muddasar Ahmad (22), Shahrukh Pathan (25), Abdul Taufiq (24), Shoaib Khan (22), Atib Rashid (22), Yusuf Khan (32), and alleged mastermind Shaikh Irfan Shaikh Rahim.
Irfan Shaikh was arrested on Saturday, 2 July and produced before a magistrate's court the following day, which remanded him to police custody still 7 July.
Further, the police are on the lookout for one more suspect Shamim Ahmed in connection with the case.
Umesh was allegedly attacked with a knife by a group of three men between 10 pm and 10.30 pm on 21 June. He died during treatment at hospital.
'Didn't Reveal Nupur Sharma Link As Case of 'Sensitive Nature'': Police
Meanwhile, responding to aspersions made against the state police, police Commissioner Arti Singh on Monday said that links between social media posts supporting suspended BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma and Kolhe’s murder were found during the investigation and police didn't suppress the case as was alleged.
Police didn't disclose the link earlier given the "very sensitive" nature of the murder case and to avoid any untoward incident, she said.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah had ordered the NIA to take over the case after the local BJP unit had accused the police of trying to conceal the motive behind the murder.
Local BJP MP Navneet Kaur Rana had questioned the then state government led by Uddhav Thackeray.
After taking over as the new chief minister, Eknath Shinde called the killing a "national issue."
(With inputs from PTI.)
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