The chief of the Special
Investigating Team (SIT) probing the Diwali-eve blast in Goa has
come under a cloud with a court picking holes in his crime
investigation skills in a 2000 blast in Vasco allegedly carried out
by Islamic militant outfit Deendar Anjuman (DA).
District and Sessions judge Desmond D’Costa, while acquitting the
main accused Mirasahab Kaujalgi, as also Mohammad Farooq Ali on Nov
18, has suggested that the police investigation team led by then
Deputy Superintendent of Police Om Prakash Kurtadkar could have
manipulated the panchanama, which is written at the scene of
offence. Kurtadkar, now a superintendent of police, heads the SIT.
Kurtadkar told the court that items attached under the panchanama
were lying at the spot from the date of the incident, D’Costa
pointed to the contrary.
appears that the police had prior knowledge of the same, and the
same cannot be said to be recovered at the instance of the accused
Mirasahab. The same does not form any reliable piece of
circumstantial evidence to connect accused Mirasahab with the
crime,” the acquittal order reads.
also said the investigating team had not brought forth even an iota
of evidence to show that the accused persons were in Goa.
prosecution has failed to prove that the accused had any knowledge
of the places in Goa and the location of the said places,” D’Costa
no evidence that either of the accused had planted the explosive
devices at St Andrew Church and that they had done so to insult the
followers of the Catholic religion or that they had caused the
explosion to endanger the church building,” the judgement further
and his accomplice had been accused of planting an improvised
explosive device (IED) near St Andrews Church. No one was injured in
spokesperson Atmaram Deshpande told IANS said the court order was
yet to be received.
get it, we will ask the officer concerned (Kurtadkar) to look at it.
Only after that we will be able to decide whether we would be going
in appeal against the order,” Deshpande said.
have come in for a fair bit of criticism for their handling of the
investigation in the Diwali-eve blast case by the Bharatiya Janata
Party, which claims that the investigators were succumbing to
people, allegedly members of the Sanatan Sanstha (SS) have been
arrested in connection with the blast, which saw two other members
of the SS die in the explosion while allegedly ferrying
detonator-rigged gelatin sticks to a crowded area in Margao, a south
Goa town, on Oct 16.