In a major breakthrough to the murder of senior journalist Gauri Lankesh, the Karnataka police on Monday arrested two more accused for allegedly destructing significant evidences in the case.
Hailing from Karnataka's Hubli, Amith Baddi and Ganesh Miskin will be in police custody for questioning over the next 15 days. While Amith Baddi is a goldsmith by profession, Gamesh Miskin drives a TSR and makes incense sticks in his leisure time. Both Baddi and Miskin are also accused of murder, abetment, conspiracy and violation of various sections of the Arms Act.
Their arrest came days after police on July 18 had arrested Mohan Nayak, 50, from Sullia in the coastal Dakshina Kannada district. With this, the number of arrests in the month-old case has gone up to nine.
In a dramatic turn of events, police on February had taken 38-year-old Hindu Yuva Sena member, KT Naveen Kumar into custody, who was accused of ferrying the killer to Lankesh's house in the dreadful night of September 5, 2017.
Kumar is also accused of planning the murder of KS Bhagawan, another rationalist, writer and a strong critic of Hindutva.
Post that, police spelled out the role of Parashuram Waghmare, Mohan Nayak, Amol Kalle and Praveen in the murder of the 55-year-old journalist.
According to police, Waghmare is the key accused, who pulled the trigger on Lankesh outside her residence in Bengaluru on September 5 while Nayak provided shelter to all of them from June to July 2017, when the murder plot was being cooked.
Going by the forensic report, the gun used in Lankesh's murder as the same which shot MM Kalburgi, a well-known rationalist, who was murdered in August 2015. Following the report, four more suspects were trapped from Maharashtra.
Gauri Lankesh, the Indian journalist-turned-activist from Bangalore, was shot dead by a group of miscreants outside her residence on September 5, last year. She was the editor of the Gauri Lankesh Patrike, a tabloid known for 'anti-establishment' views.
Following her murder, several protests, across the country and especially in prominent parts of Karnataka, had taken place.
An award of Rs 10 lakh had also been announced for the people, who lead to the arrest of the murderers.