Panaji: Crime branch of Goa police on Friday arrested three inmates of Colvale jail in connection with the murder of undertrial Vinayak Karbotkar earlier this year. Crime branch arrested Rahul Kumar, George Fernandes and Mohammed Salim Shaikh.SP (crime branch) Priyanka Kashyap confirmed the arrest of the accused. “Accused are suspected to be involved in the crime as they were present at the scene of crime,”
We will interrogate the accused to find out the motive behind the murder, she said. Crime branch sleuths on Friday brought the accused to crime branch from Colvale jail after obtaining a warrant for custody of the trio. Later in the evening they were produced before the JMFC, Vasco, and have been remanded to five-day police custody. Kashyap said that they are also trying to retrieve CCTV camera footage of the rioting in Sada jail from a hard disk that was broken during the ruckus. Karbotkar was killed on January 24, after a fight broke out between two groups of jail inmates in which some inmates were injured. The case was transferred to the crime branch in February.Six months before his murder, Karbotkar was charged with killing history-sheeter, Ashpak Bengre, at central jail, Colvale, where both were lodged.
The trio identified as Rahul Kumar, George Fernandes and Mohd Salim Shaikh are alleged to have been involved in a brawl with Karbotkar in the Sada sub-jail, that led to the latter’s death. “They have been arrested on suspicion. Interrogation will reveal whether they are directly involved in the killing and the motive behind resorting to this crime,”
Karbotkar, facing trial in more than 10 criminal cases, was killed on January 24, 2017, after a fight broke out between two factions of inmates in the jail in which some other inmates were injured. The case, which was registered with Mormugao police station, was transferred to Crime Branch in February.
Director General of Police Dr Muktesh Chander had ordered the transfer of the case following apprehension by the deceased’s father that police would tamper with the investigation as they themselves are witnesses.
The probe, sources said, is likely to expose a larger nexus between some Sada sub-jail officials and Vasco escort cell sleuths as Oras jail authorities’ refusal to take Karbotkar’s custody despite a transit remand, the time taken to ferry him from Oras (in Maharashtra) to Sada and the inmate’s entry into the jail premise in an inebriated condition raised queries about what happened enroute. Karbotkar was being tried in another narcotics case in Nashik and was last charged with allegedly murdering gangster Askpak Bhengre in Colvale jail in June 2016.
Who was Vinayak Karbotkar?
Murder accused Vinayak Karbotkar was shifted to Sada sub-jail,Vasco, six months ago after he allegedly killed Ashpak Bengre, also a murder accused, while lodged at Central Jail in Colvale. Apart from links to the Bengre murder case, Karbotkar was booked in 13 criminal cases at Porvorim, Calangute, Ponda, Agasaim and Mapusa police stations, of which eight cases are pending trial and in three cases police filed ‘A Final’ report. He was acquitted in one case and one case was compounded.
Bengre was attacked by Karbotkar with a sharp weapon while he was waiting to be escorted to the Mapusa court. The CCTVfootage of the crime scene revealed Karbotkar’s involvement in Bengre’s murder. During investigation by the crime branch, Karbotkar confessed to his crime, police said.
A source said there’s a high possibility that rival gang members wanting to settle scores with Karbotkar took advantage of the situation when chaos ensured at the sub-jail on Tuesday night and jail mates clashed among themselves.