In the hearing of Gauri Lankesh murder case, the trial court heard that the DNA tissue found on the toothbrush found in an abandoned hideout in Bengaluru showed a positive match with Parashuram Waghmore, an accused shooter of Lankesh.
L Purushotham, an assistant director and technical manager of the DNA section at the Karnataka State Forensic Science Laboratory has presented a series of findings, including the DNA match of tissues found on a toothbrush with Waghmore, as well as hair found on bedsheets at hideouts with other key players in the murder plot.
According to the chargesheet filed by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) Waghmore was the one who shot Gauri Lankesh at the doorstep of her house.
The DNA match is considered a key evidence to link the Waghmore’s presence in Bengaluru during the execution of the crime plotted by a right-wing group.
The question though arises is how did the SIT got access to the toothbrush of Waghmore?
The answer is, before the Lankesh shootout, the six perpetrators used Suresh’s house as a hideout for planning and executing the murder. After the murder, the belongings of the accused were dumped by Suresh, who is a building contractor as well as an alleged activist of the Sanatan Sanstha affiliate the Hindu Janajagruti Samiti.
The SIT recovered a bag containing toothbrushes, clothes, and fake vehicle number plates in August 2018 following the arrest of Suresh. However, no positive match of DNA has been found for other accused.
The SIT also found a match between DNA strands from hair found on a blanket at the hideout and the DNA profile of the alleged mastermind of the murder, Amol Kale (39) a former Pune convenor of the Hindu Janajagruti Samiti.
Purushotham has told the trial court that that the DNA derived from hair samples sent by the SIT was identical to the DNA profile of Amol Kale but not Waghmore.
Gauri Lankesh was a 55 years old journalist and an activist from Bengaluru. She was shot dead by two assassins on 5th September 2017. However, the conspiracy for her murder was started in 2016, and Parashuram Waghmore was recruited to put together a team by Amol Kale for the assassination.
A chargesheet of 1000 pages have been submitted by the police in the case which contains the confession of Parshuram stating Amol Kale convinced him that it was his duty to kill the journalist-activist for her anti-Hindu views.
The charge sheet consists of 18 names of men who were involved in the murder conspiracy and were said to be affiliated with various right-wing Hindutva outfits.