Gauri Lankesh murder: Family says finding out motive behind killing will answer a lot of questions

By IANS

Bengaluru: Slain journalist-activist Gauri Lankesh's family on Thursday demanded that investigators should not only catch her killers, but also find out the motive for the crime.

Lankesh, the Editor of Kannada tabloid "Gauri Lankesh Patrike", was shot dead outside her residence in Bengaluru on 5 September by unidentified assailants.

Protests in Bangalore against Gauri Lankesh's killing. PTI

"The only question the Lankesh family has is not just about her killers but why she was killed," her brother Indrajit Lankesh told reporters in Bengaluru.

"A lot of questions will be answered (by knowing the motive) - whether it is MM Kalburgi's, Narendra Dhabolkar's or Govind Pansare's murders, through Gauri's murderers," he added.

"We request the government and the Special Investigation Team (SIT) to catch the killers as soon as possible and find out why Gauri was killed," he said, adding, "by knowing the motive, we can all give justice to Gauri".

Lankesh's brother Indrajit, mother Indira and sister Kavitha addressed a press conference after Thursday's announcement of annual Anna Politkovskaya Award posthumously for Gauri Lankesh, given to women human rights defenders from war and conflict zones.

The family has been in constant touch with the investigation team, he said.

"Any details regarding the investigation aren't being given out by the officials (to public) as there have already been speculations in the media, including targeting my brother (Indrajit) many times," Kavitha Lankesh, a filmmaker, said.

"It is horrible that at a time when we are all distressed, different people are being targeted at different times," she said.

"We cannot say we are happy with the investigation, until the killers are found. But we are satisfied that some kind of work is going on, with extensive research by the SIT," she added.

Karnataka Home Minister Ramalinga Reddy on Monday said the investigation team had got "some clues" on the killers and knows who is behind the crime, but is waiting to gather more concrete evidence.

The 150-member SIT is headed by Inspector General of Police BK Singh with Deputy Commissioner of Police (West) MN Anucheth as its main Investigation Officer.

The state government had announced Rs 10 lakh reward to anyone giving information leading to the killers.