Published On: Tue, Mar 9th, 2021

Widow suspects cop of ‘killing’ husband Hiren

Mumbai: In another dramatic twist in the case pertaining to the explosive-laden SUV parked outside Antilia, the residence of business tycoon Mukesh Ambani in Mumbai, Vimla Hiren, the widow of slain businessman Mansukh Hiren has accused Assistant Police-Inspector Sachin Vaze of killing her husband, prompting the Opposition BJP to demand the policeman’s suspension and arrest.

Whom does the state want to protect,” asked Fadnavis in the House

The Maharashtra Assembly witnessed an uproar after it emerged that Vimla Hiren had lodged an FIR with the Kalachowki police station on March 7, in which she has stated, “I suspect (API) Vaze must have murdered my husband”, and demanded an investigation.

She also said in her complaint that since November 2020, the SUV was given by her husband to Vaze, who returned it on February 5 as its steering wheel was getting jammed.

On February 17, Hiren had left his Thane home for Mumbai in the same Scorpio but the steering got jammed and he left it near the Mulund toll post and took off in a private taxi. The following morning, Hiren and a mechanic returned to the spot but the SUV was missing, following which he lodged a complaint with the Vikhroli police station on February 18.

Barely a week later, the missing/stolen SUV shot into national headlines after it was found abandoned near the home of industrialist Mukesh Ambani with 20 gelatin sticks and a purported typewritten threat note in it.

BJP Leader of Oppositon Devendra Fadnavis read out a copy of Vimla Hiren’s FIR in the House and demanded immediate suspension and arrest of Vaze, who is attached to the elite Crime Intelligene Unit (CIU) of Mumbai Crime Branch.

“Whom does the state want to protect,” asked Fadnavis in the House, slamming the Maha Vikas Aghadi government as the House saw four adjornments on the issue.

“Mansukh Hiren’s body was found later around 40 km away… He may have been murdered in the vehicle and the body may have been thrown into the (Thane) Creek. Since there was a low tide, the body was recovered,” Fadnavis said.

He also demanded to know if the government was trying to shield Vaze as he had joined a ‘particular political party’, though Home Minister Anil Deshmukh declined to comment on the matter.

Fadnavis alleged that the government was allowing him (Vaze) to even destroy the evidence in the (Hiren) case. To this, Deshmukh got up and clarified that while Vaze is with the CIU, the (Hiren) case is being investigated by the state Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS).

Shiv Sena member Bhaskar Jadhav then intervened to attack the BJP, saying it was agitated as Vaze had investigated the double-suicide case of architect Anvay Naik and his mother, and had also arrested Republic TV Editor in Chief Arnab Goswami last year.

Vritually endorsing Jadhav, Deshmukh said that Fadnavis – as the then CM handling the home department – had “suppressed” Naiks’ case, as the House went into a turmoil.

“However, his widow and daughter came to us and requested for a probe,” Deshmukh reiterated.

Congress legislator and state party chief Nana Patole demanded to know how Fadnavis managed to get the CDR details vis-a-vis the Vaze-Hiren case. Countering this, Fadnavis said: “You want to know… Please order an enquiry against me. I request the Home Minister for a probe against me.”

Fadnavis further claimed that Hiren’s last location was with one Dhananjay V Gawde against whom an FIR was lodged in 2017 for demanding a ransom amount of Rs 40 lakh.

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