Mumbai: Suspended police inspector Sunil Mane had asked someone if he could dispose of auto parts dealer Mansukh Hiran’s body, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) told a special NIA court on Tuesday. NIA claimed this while seeking for Mane’s further custody.
Mane, who was arrested on 23 April for his alleged involvement in the Antilla bomb scare and Mansukh Hiran murder case, was further remanded to NIA’s custody till May 1.
While the agency did not specify who the person was that Mane had spoken to, NIA said that the person’s statement has been recorded. The agency also told the court that there were seven phone calls between suspended assistant police inspector Sachin Vaze, a co-accused, and Mane before Hiran’s murder. Of these, while two were missed calls, five calls it suspects, were made to plan the murder.
NIA also told the court further that Mane played a part in getting Hiran out of his home and in his kidnapping, as well as that of a conspiracy of seizing Hiran’s cell phone, switching it off and then switching it on at another location.
On the day of the murder, Mane was in his (crime branch) office and when he left, he had switched off his phone and handed it to a junior, NIA told the court. On his instructions, the phone was put in a bag and taken to Mane’s home. The agency claimed that then he went to Thane, where he met Vaze and called Hiran. Mane then, it said, snatched Hiran’s phone on his arrival and switched it off.
Appearing for Mane, his advocate Aditya Gore argued that it was not plausible that being an experienced police officer of the rank of an inspector, Mane would ask someone to dispose of Hiran’s body.
Seeking Mane’s custody for another eight days, the NIA said it had recovered incriminating documents from his home and also his and his wife’s security services office apart from telephonic evidence, that it needs to confront him with. Gore argued that all seizures have been completed and Mane has cooperated with the probe, hence further custody was not required.