Gauri Lankesh was killed to save my religion, Waghmore reportedly told the SIT.
If the Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the killing of journalist-activist Gauri Lankesh is to be believed, they have the man who pulled the trigger and a reason why he did so.
According to the SIT, Parashuram Waghmore has admitted that he killed Gauri in order to protect his religion.
Waghmore, 26, was picked up from Vijayapura district in north Karnataka earlier this week.
He told the SIT that he had no idea whom he was killing. “I was told in May 2017 I had to kill someone to save my religion. I agreed. I didn’t know who the victim was. Now I feel that I should have not killed the woman,” sources quoted Waghmore as confessing to the SIT.
Gauri was killed when he pumped four bullets into her in front of her house in R R Nagar, Bengaluru, on the night of September 5, 2017, after returning from work.
This is what Waghmore reportedly told the SIT: “I was first taken to a house. After two hours, a biker took me to show the house of the person I was to kill. The next day, the biker took me to another room in Bengaluru. Another man in the room took me to the R R Nagar house again on a bike and dropped me back. I was again taken to Gauri’s house in the evening, by the same biker who had taken me the previous day. I was told that I had to finish the job that day. But Gauri had returned from work by then and was inside her house.
“On September 5, I was given the gun around 4pm by the biker and we went to her house in the evening. We arrived at the right time. Gauri had stopped her car in front of the gate and was opening it from inside when I approached her. I coughed lightly and she turned towards me. I pumped four bullets into her. We returned to the room and left the city the same night”.
Times of India quoted what Waghmore reportedly told the SIT.
Waghmore said he was brought to Bengaluru on September 3. He had been trained to use an airgun in Belagavi.
At least three people were with Waghmore in Bengaluru at different times: one was the man who brought him to Bengaluru, the second was the biker who took him to Gauri’s house on three evenings and the third was the one who took him to Gauri’s house on September 4.
But strangely, Waghmore said he didn’t know who the three men were. This is one point that sticks out. But he reportedly told the SIT that “Asking such a question is taboo” in his organisation.
According to SIT, the killer and his support men stayed in two places in the city. Three more people involved in Gauri’s killing are yet to be arrested, the SIT was quoted as saying.