Nagpur: The murder at Shivaji Nagar extension last week sent ripples across political fraternity as crime branch has turned its investigation towards a relative and a close aide of Kamptee-based gangster-turned-BJP politician Ranjeet Salpekar. This relative is identified as Kalu Hate who is under the crime branch scanner in connection with the murder of Ritesh Baisware who is allegedly said to be close to a Congress leader.
The accused in the Ritesh Bhaisware murder case Ashwin Turkel, Nikhil Dagor and Sandeep Mahato reportedly immediately after the murder had gone to Kalu Hate a resident of Kamptee for shelter, before surrendering late in the evening. Reliable sources added that the assailants were constantly communicating with Kalu Hate in the evening before the murder too.
The Crime branch officials who were handed over the probe on Monday, are trying to establish the conspiracy behind the murder and to investigate whether some property dispute or political rivalry existed as cause of the murder. Initially, it was believed that the murder was a fall-out between Turkel and Baisware, who once used to be friends. Baisware had allegedly been threatening Turkel and his close aide Dagor after frequent clashes between them over trivial issues. Baisware had also allegdly slapped Turkel in front of some girls. Turkel was said to be creating ruckus in front of Baisware’s shop which was owned in partnership with a former corporator off and on.
The case which was initially registered and probed by Ambazhari police, was taken away amidst allegations of favouring culprits. A Congress MLA, who was present at Government Medical College and Hospital during Baisware’s post mortem, reportedly spoke to city police top brass regarding the sloppy probe. The victim’s family members too had met city police chief KK Pathak regarding the investigations.
Sources claimed that Kamptee-based Hate and Salpekar enjoy considerable popularity among a community in West Nagpur, especially in pockets like Valmiki Nagar, Pandhrabodhi, Futala Basti and other adjoining places. Disputed properties at prime locations have now become targets of these smaller gangs, who owe allegiance to Salpekar and Hate.
Crime branch are now trying to find out whether a property dispute paved the way for clashes between Turkel and Baisware, who belonged to different groups. Youngsters close to Salpekar and Hate had earlier clashed with Sanjay Fatode’s group, the key man of city-based gangster-turned-real estate dealer Santosh Ambekar, at Pandhrabodhi last year.