A day after the Union Home Minister handed over the Mansukh Hiren case to the National Investigation Agency (NIA), the Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) of Maharashtra Police claimed that they have solved the case.
Shivdeep Wamanrao Lande, the Deputy Inspector General of Police (D.I.G.) for the ATS, posted a message on Facebook today, saying that the puzzle of the very sensitive Mansukh Hiren murder case has been solved. However, he didn’t give any detail about the same. Lande said that he heartily salutes all his ATS police force colleagues who worked day and night for several days, which have resulted in justice in the case. He further added that this case has been one of the most complex cases of his police career.
The comments of the DIG came after the ATS made two arrests in the case today. The ATS had arrested a 55-year-old former police constable named Vinayak Shinde and a 31-year-old bookie named Naresh Dhare in connection with the case. Shinde is an accused in the Lakhan Bhaiya encounter case and he had worked with Sachin Waze in the team of encounter specialist Pradeep Sharma.
Mansukh Hiren case transferred to NIA
Even though ATS has continued to probe the Mansukh Hiren death case and made the two arrests today, the case has been transferred to the National Investigation Agency. Yesterday, the union home ministry had issued orders to the NIA to take over the case from the ATS. It is not known when the ATS will formally hand over the case to NIA.
Mansukh Hiren was found dead in Kalwa Creek in Mumbai on 5th March, just days after his Scorpio car laden with explosive gelatine sticks was found outside the residence of Mukesh Ambani on 25th February. Although initially Mumbai police tried to say that Hiren had committed suicide, soon it had become clear that it was a murder related to the explosive case. Earlier Hiren had lodged a complaint that his car was stolen.
By now it has revealed that the car was planted by Mumbai Police API Sachin Vaze, who knew Mansukh Hiren and had used the Scorpio car for several months earlier. He had kept the car at his residence before he had planted it near Antilia. To cover his traces, he had taken the CCTV footage from his building and destroyed them. The number plate of the Scorpio was found from a Mercedes he was using, and an Innova car that had trailed the Scorpio was found in Mumbai Police Commissioner’s office, which was parked there by Vaze. Apart from that, NIA has also recovered two more cars, one Land Cruiser Prado and another Mercedes.
It is suspected that Sachin Vaze killed Mansukh Hiren. In that context, it will be interesting to know what is the conclusion of ATS, after they ‘solved’ the case.