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Right-Wing Activist Kalaskar Arrested in Pansare Murder Case

In the Pansare case, Kalaskar allegedly dismantled the weapons used in the crime.

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A special team of the Maharashtra police on Tuesday, 11 June, arrested right-wing activist Sharad Kalaskar in connection with the killing of veteran Communist leader Govind Pansare, an official said.

A Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the state Crime Investigation Department (CID) arrested 25-year-old Kalaskar from Mumbai and produced him before a court in Kolhapur which sent him in police custody till 18 June, he said.

Kalaskar, whose name has figured in a series of high profile crimes, was arrested by the Maharashtra ATS in the Palghar arms haul case in August last year.

According to the CBI, he was one of the two shooters who gunned down rationalist Narendra Dabholkar in Pune in August 2013.

Last year, his statement was recorded in the 2015 Pansare murder case by the SIT as a witness.

In February 2015, Kalaskar had stayed in Kolhapur for more than a week before Pansare's murder in that city, which is around 400 km from Mumbai, he said.

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Kalaskar's name had also figured in the September 2017 murder of journalist-activist Gauri Lankesh in which he was subsequently arrested, the official said.

He was named as accused number 16 in the Lankesh case after probe revealed that he played a key role in handling the weapons used for the murder in Bengaluru, he added.

In the Pansare case, Kalaskar allegedly dismantled the weapons used in the crime, he said.

During the investigation, the CID SIT found Kalaskar's role in the assassination of Pansare and accordingly he was arrested, the official said.

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