Gauri Lankesh murder: SIT releases two suspects' sketches, rules out professional rivalry as reason for killing

The Karnataka Police special investigating team (SIT), which is probing the murder of Bengaluru-based journalist-activist Gauri Lankesh, on Saturday released the sketches of two suspects involved in the crime. Lankesh was shot dead outside her house on 5 September.

The SIT released three stretches in a press conference in Bengaluru, hoping locals in Lankesh's neighbourhood and elsewhere would come forward and help the police in the investigation.

"We have prepared these sketches with the help of separate eyewitness accounts and our technical inputs. We are probing two suspects, although we have released three sketches because of multiple eyewitness accounts," SIT chief BK Singh said. "I appeal to the locals to come ahead and help us in the probe if they have essential inputs."

The Karnataka government has announced a cash reward of Rs 10 lakh to anyone giving information leading to the killers, CNN-News18 reported. 

Saying that the police has investigated 200 to 250 people in the case so far, Singh said that details of the unidentified assailants are not yet known other than the fact that they were in Bengaluru for a week before the murder. "They might have been in the city for much longer, but we know that the suspects were in Bengaluru for at least seven days before committing the crime," he said.

He added that one of the suspects sported a tilak on his forehead, but that might have been done to "mislead" investigators, CNN News-18 reported.

Singh said that the police are investigating all angles in this case and are leaving no stone unturned.

"There is a personal angle, a professional angle — given she was an active journalist — and an activist angle here. So far, we have only ruled out the professional angle, which has to do with her journalism. We do not know anything else about the motive yet," he said.

The police also said that no link has been established so far to the murder of Narendra Dabolkar.

Earlier, reports had emerged of five people allegedly associated with the right-wing Hindu organisation Sanatan Sanstha being the key suspects in Lankesh's murder. However, the police have said no such association has been established with any organisation till now.

Updated Date: Oct 15, 2017 08:32 AM

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