In a heinous incident that took place in Aurangabad city of Maharashtra, eight culprits beat a 27-year-old youth to death over suspicion of theft on Wednesday 20th April 2022. Two of the accused are sons of a late ex-Shiv Sena corporator. Five of the eight accused culprits were arrested by the Aurangabad police and presented in front of the court on Friday 22nd April 2022. The Judicial Magistrate (First Class) Justice S. U. Nyaharkar ordered police custody of the accused till 26th April 2022.
The incident took place at a hall managed by the culprits
According to a report by Punya Nagari, the estate department of the Aurangabad Municipal Corporation had allotted the Dhannulal Meghawale multipurpose hall in HUDCO (Housing and Urban Development Corporation) area to a relative of the former Shiv Sena corporator late Ganpat Kharat on a ten-year rental agreement at the rate of Rs 6,000 per month. The hall was given to be run in the name of Swapnali Nilesh Khare. However, after Kharat’s death, his sons Sagar and Sunny were running the hall.
At this place, Manoj Awhad (age 27, resident of Vivekanand Nagar in the HUDCO area of Aurangabad) was working as a watchman. He was living in a room in the same multipurpose hall with his wife and son. While he was at work, owner Kharat and caterer Satish Khare were repeatedly suspicious of him as some of the items in this hall were stolen. Fed up with the constant controversy, Manoj’s wife had left for her maternal home a month ago.
A function was held four days ago at the Meghawale multipurpose hall. A woman had complained to the owners Kharat and Khare that the mobile was stolen that day. Manoj Awhad was questioned about the mobile. Due to this, Manoj Awhad had left work and gone to his mother’s home in the Champa Chowk area of the city.
They called the victim to the hall
While Manoj was with his mother, Satish Khare and Sagar Kharat along with three or four youths called him on Wednesday 20th April 2022. Manoj Awhad was taken to the hall at around 3 PM where the accused beat him for one and half hours with sticks, wooden logs, kicks, and punches so brutally that he died on the spot. The culprits involved in this heinous act include Sagar Ganpat Kharat (age 28), Rohan alias Sunny Ganpat Kharat (age 26), Shivam Narendra Tupe (age 26), Ashtapal Ramesh Gavai (age 27), all of whom live near TV center in sector N-12 of the HUDCO area of Aurangabad and Anand Laxman Gaikwad (age 22) and Anand Bhausaheb Solas (age 22), both resident of Shatabdinagar in the same sector N-12 and Satish Bhaskar Khare (age 45) who lives in Siddharthnagar in the sector N-12 of the HUDCO area of Aurangabad.
Video of the incident was made viral with a purpose
While others were beating the victim Manoj Awhad to death, Shivam Tupe was making a video of the incident on a mobile phone. After the crime, he sent the video to the brother of deceased Manoj Awhad who had gone on the pilgrimage of a local saint Mangir Baba. He immediately reached the house of the accused Satish Khare as soon as he saw the video on WhatsApp but there was no one there. He found no one when he reached the multipurpose hall either. Later he visited the government hospital and medical college (GHATI) only to see the dead body of his deceased brother.
The culprits tried to pretend that it was an accidental death of an unknown person
When the accused came to know that Manoj was dead, they started planning how to dispose of his body. For this, they brought liquor to the hall. They sat in front of Manoj Awhad’s dead body and spilled the liquor all over. The accused consumed the liquor too. Then they removed the entire clothes stained with blood on his body. They cleaned the dead body with a freshwater bath and changed the clothes. Manoj Awhad’s dead body was then rushed to the GHATI in Satish Khare’s car for ‘treatment’. The culprits gave evasive answers when questioned by the Chief Medical Officer (CMO). It is a must to provide the name and number of the applicant in the GHATI. They gave the name of Ashtapal Gavai and the mobile number of Satish Khare. The accused killers told the CMO, “The young man was seen lying unconscious near the GHATI hospital, so we have brought him here for treatment, we do not know his name, village, address.” Before leaving the hospital, they registered their wrong names, address, and mobile numbers. The medical officers examined Manoj Awhad and declared him brought dead.
Deceased Manoj Awhad’s mother Aruna Sheshrao Awhad (age 50) approached the CIDCO police station and showed the video and told the police what had happened. Deputy Commissioner of Police Deepak Ginche, Assistant Police Inspector Nishikant Bhujbal, Police Inspector Sambhaji Pawar, Assistant Police Inspector Shradha Waydande, Sub-Inspector of Police Ashok Avchar inspected the spot. A case of murder has been registered against eight persons in the case. Satish Khare, Sagar Kharat, Sunny Kharat, Anand Solas, and Shivam Tupe, who made the video, have been arrested. The accused were traced by the misfit details they provided in the hospital under the effect of the liquor they consumed.
The police investigation has revealed that the gang had beaten up Manoj Awhad mercilessly till his death just with the intention that no one would dare to steal from their multipurpose hall anymore. Some of the accused told the police that they had already consumed alcohol at the time of the incident. Therefore, they had no idea how much time they were beating the victim Manoj Awhad. They just kept on hitting and Manoj Awhad died of it. The culprits told in the investigation that they thought ‘you have a watchman who himself is a thief, he has to be taught a lesson, so a video must be made and sent to his family, it must be made viral to show people how a stealer should be punished’. Throughout the course of the incident, the victim Manoj Awhad was saying that he is not the thief and he was pleading for his life. But the gang of the accused culprits did not listen to his request and kept on beating him.
Inside the court
All the five arrested accused out of the eight were presented before the Judicial Magistrate S. U. Nyaharkar on Friday 22nd April 2022. The magistrate ordered that all of them be sent to police custody till 26th April 2022. Two of the accused, the Kharat brothers, happen to be the sons of a former Shiv Sena corporator late Ganpat Kharat, therefore a large mob was present at the CIDCO police station when the accused were being taken to the court. The mob included many relatives of the siblings. The two brothers were crying at that time. The relatives in the crowd were supporting the murderers by saying “Don’t cry Bhaiyya. We are with you. Nothing will happen.”
When the accused killers were boarding the police van, at that time both the brothers started crying yet more loudly. The relatives too then started shouting aloud saying “Don’t cry. Nothing will happen. We all are here with you.” The police then moved the relatives away from the vehicle.
Will the Aurangabad Municipal Corporation act?
The Aurangabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) was formed in 1989 and since then Shiv Sena is ruling the sub-capital of what once used to be the Nizam state before it was merged into independent India in 1948. The hall where the incident took place is owned by the municipal corporation but it was indirectly handled and controlled by the Shiv Sena corporator first and later his sons after his death. Anand Laxman Gaikwad involved in this murder is an employee of the municipal corporation. This is a clear violation of the rules and regulations of the municipal corporation. Therefore, the AMC administration has now started a move to cancel the agreement regarding the hall and take over the hall.