Sharad Kalaskar Admits to Shooting Dabholkar, Says Right-Wing Group Gave Him Crash Course in Bomb-Making
He also admitted to be involved in the murders of Govind Pansare and Gauri Lankesh.
Sharad Kalaskar, arrested in October 2018 in connection with the murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh, has confessed to the murder of rationalist Narendra Dabholkar. He has also admitted to being involved in the murders of Gauri Lankesh and Govind Pansare.
Dabholkar’s murder in Pune, in August 2013, had been followed by the shooting of Govind Pansare in February 2015 and MM Kalburgi in Kolhapur in August 2015. Gauri Lankesh was shot dead in Bengaluru in September 2017.
NDTV accessed Kalaskar’s 14-page confession. He admits to shooting Dabholkar twice when the latter was out on a morning walk on the Omkareshwar Bridge in Pune. Kalaskar was arrested by the Maharashtra Anti-terror Squad last year. During the questions, the Maharashtra ATS was able to establish a link between the murders of rationalists and Gauri Lankesh and right-wing outfits. Kalaskar said that some right-wing members gave him a ‘crash course’ in ideology, use of firearms and bomb-making.
He claimed that he was told by Virandra Tawde, allegedly the main conspirator, that he would have to shoot Dabholkar in the head “We have to finish off some evil men,” he said. Tawde has also been arrested by the CBI and charged, NDTV reported. Tawde introduced Kalaskar to Amol Kale, who has been arrested for the murder of Gauri Lankesh. Kalaskar admitted to attending several meetings where the plot to assassinate Lankesh was discussed.
“In August 2016, there was a meeting in Belgaum, where the names of people working against Hinduism were asked for. In that meeting, the name of Gauri Lankesh came up and the decision to murder her was taken,” he reportedly said. A year after this, another meeting was held where the plot was finalised. Gauri Lankesh was killed a month later.
Kalaskar also claimed that there was also a plan to target Retired Bombay High Court judge Justice BG Kolse Patil.