Mumbai: The police have slapped two charges — that of criminal intimidation under the IPC and another count under the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act — against IIT Bombay student Arman Khatri, who was arrested in connection with the suicide of his batchmate Darshan Solanki.
The charge under the SC/ST Act stems from an offence committed against a person with the knowledge that the person belongs to the SC/ST community. Prosecutor Veena Shelar informed the court of the additional charges while seeking Khatri’s extended custody for investigation.
Court extended accused's custody till April 15
The special court designated under the SC/ST Act has accordingly extended the custody till April 15.
The police have learned through witnesses that Solanki had spoken offensively about Islam, according to the remand application submitted before the court. Solanki had then repeatedly apologised to Khatri but the latter had threatened Solanki with a paper cutter.
Solanki was very scared and other students had tried to pacify him, the police learnt during investigation. Solanki had also developed fever the night before suicide, according to the remand application.
The prosecution told the court that they expect to retrieve the mobile data of Khatri’s phone shortly and require his custody to confront him with the findings.
Victim's father urged police to stress on caste angle
Meanwhile, Ramesh Bhai Solanki, the father of the deceased, on Wednesday wrote to Joint Police Commissioner L Gautam, who is heading the SIT, that the caste angle should not be ignored. Recently, Solanki’s sister found a few chats on his social media account in which another account holder called ‘Sam Rajput’ asked him a question that revealed his caste. According to the sister, Solanki went on to say in the chat that “now even Sam will not like him as he knows his caste”.
Ramesh Solanki has urged the senior police officer to investigate this angle, too.