No proof against Sanatan activist, says Maharashtra minister

Sanatan Sanstha activist Sameer Gaikwad, arrested in connection with the murder of rationalist Govind Pansare, has been kept in custody solely on the basis of suspicion and there is no proof against him on Tuesday, Maharashtra Minister of State for Home Ranjit Patil said here today.

Mumbai: Sanatan Sanstha activist Sameer Gaikwad, arrested in connection with the murder of rationalist Govind Pansare, has been kept in custody solely on the basis of suspicion and there is no proof against him on Tuesday, Maharashtra Minister of State for Home Ranjit Patil said here today.

"He (Gaikwad) has been kept inside (jail) only on the baisis of suspicion. There is no proof (against him) today," the minister said.

"I know one thing. We also speak on the phone: I will see you (pahun ghevu). Does this mean that if someone goes (dies) the next day, the same person (who threatened him on phone) killed him," Patil said at Akola.

"The State Intelligence Department inputs were like that but we gave instructions that he should be kept in police custody until the investigation is complete and all suspicion is removed," the minister said.

"Violent extremism doesn't have global borders and neither does it have any religion. If anyone has committed a crime, he will be punished, regardless of whether someone is (from) Sanatan or from any other sect," the minister said.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had said recently that the state government would not hesitate to act against Sanatan Sanstha if any evidence was found against the organisation.

"I understand that the central government did not take any decision based on a 2011 report sent by the earlier Congress-led government, recommending that Sanatan Sanstha ought to be banned," Fadnavis said.

The demand to ban Sanatan Sanstha has gained momentum after Sameer Gaikwad was arrested last month in connection with the murder of Communist Party of India (CPI) leader Govind Pansare. 

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