Mumbai: A PIL in the Bombay High Court on Friday sought action against former Pune Police Commissioner Gulabrao Pol for allegedly taking the help of 'tantriks' (occultists) to crack the murder of anti-superstition activist Narendra Dabholkar.
A bench of Justices VM Kanade and PD Kode asked the petitioner Hemant Patil, an activist from Pune, to make a representation to CBI which is probing Dabholkar's murder.
The judges, while disposing of the PIL, said since CBI was probing the case it would be appropriate if the petitioner approached the investigation agency.
Petitioner's lawyer RN Kachave said the Pune police, which was earlier investigating the case, had sought the help of tantriks to ascertain the identity of the conspirators and perpetrators to grill the accused.
The tantriks allegedly used 'Planchets' (a means to call the spirit of dead people to reveal the truth), thereby ignoring the legal ways of questioning the suspects, the court was told.
The PIL said that it was shocking to learn from media reports that Pune police had used tantriks to interrogate the accused. Although Maharashtra is known to be a progressive state, such practices by police revealed that they had failed to achieve a breakthrough in the investigations.
The PIL said Dabholkar had campaigned against animal sacrifice, pollution of rivers during Ganesh festival and superstitious practices by people. The petition alleged that only because of negligence of the police machinery and corrupt practices, Dabholkar was killed and hence it would be fair to order a probe against the former city police chief.
In May this year, hearing another PIL filed by social activist Ketan Tirodkar, the High Court had transferred to CBI the probe into Dabholkar's murder.
Dabholkar was shot dead by unidentified assailants in Pune on August 20, 2013.