The Special Investigative Team (SIT) of the Karnataka Police on Saturday ruled out the hand of Sanatan Sanstha in the murder of journalist-activist Gauri Lankesh saying they have “no information” about the right-wing outfits’ involvement in the case.
When asked whether the group was behind the murder of Lankesh, SIT chief BK Singh said: “That information (Sanathan Sanstha) is only in the media, from our side there is no information of any organisation till now”.
Singh further said that there was “no confirmation” on whether the same weapon was used to kill Lankesh and Kannada progressive thinker and researcher MM Kalburgi.
The murder of Lankesh was reminiscent of the way Kalburgi was killed in August 2015 at his residence in Dharwad in the state’s northwest region, about 400 km from Bengaluru.
Meanwhile, Chetan Rajhans, the spokesperson for the Sanstha based in south Goa’s Ramnathi village on October 7 dismissed media reports claiming that the Karnataka SIT had zeroed down on “missing” Sanatan Sanstha members as the suspects in the Lankesh murder.
Rajhans had said that no official of the SIT had questioned any Sanatan member nor visited its ashram adding that leaks to the media was “false propaganda”.
The SIT on Saturday released the sketches of suspects who likely shot Lankesh dead on September 5. Although there are two suspects in the case, the police have released three sketches based on different accounts.
Lankesh, the Editor of Kannada tabloid “Gauri Lankesh Patrike”, was shot dead outside her residence here on September 5 by unidentified assailants
The 150-member SIT is headed by Inspector General of Police BK Singh with Deputy Commissioner of Police (West) MN Anucheth as its main Investigation Officer.
The state government had announced Rs.10 lakh reward to anyone giving information leading to the killers.