Man who went missing 5 yrs ago was murdered, finds police probe


MORE than five years after a 23-year-old man was reported missing from Erandwane, an investigation by the Pune Crime Branch into some fresh leads has revealed that he was murdered, allegedly by his two siblings with the help of an accomplice, and his body was dumped in a canal near Hadapsar.

The deceased, identified as Pankaj Dighe (23), a resident of Erandwane, was reported missing by his family members on March 9, 2017. A missing complaint was registered at Deccan Gymkhana police station on the same day. His family members had told police at the time that Pankaj had left the house after an argument with family members. Efforts by police to trace Pankaj did not yield any results at the time.

A few days ago, investigators from Unit 3 of Pune City Police’s Crime Branch received crucial leads that indicated Pankaj had been murdered. The leads led police to a decomposed body that was found in a canal near Hadapsar on March 18, a day before Pankaj was reported missing.

The post-mortem of the decomposed body had revealed a tattoo, saying ‘Pankaj’, on the right hand and Aai (mother) on the left hand. However, the body was never identified as that of Pankaj because of the extent of decomposition.

Based on fresh leads, police have said Pankaj’s elder siblings, Suhas and Ashwini, had brutally beaten him up on the evening of March 14. The suspects had allegedly dumped him in a canal at Hadapsar at a secluded location. Police on Monday arrested Dhanawade (37), the alleged accomplice, and will soon take custody of Suhas, who is currently in Yerawada Central Prison in connection to a case of theft.

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Officials said they have launched a search for Ashwini. Suhas, Ashwini and Dhanawade have all been booked for murder and destruction of evidence.





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