Sarpotdar refutes statements of witnesses

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Mumbai, July 2 (UNI) Shiv Sena leader Madhukar Sarpotdar and five others today refuted the statements of witnesses against them during the trials of the 1992 riot cases, registered at the Nirmal Nagar police station here.

Sarpotdar and the five others -- Ashok Shinde, Jayant Parab, Ms Umeshi Pawar, Shantaram Shavlekar and Pradeep Khanvilkar -- refuted the evidence given by the witnesses against them.

Metropolitan Magistrate R C Bapat-Sarkar, then, adjourned the matter till July 8 for final argument.

Witness Vidhyadhar Kanade informed the court that it was he who had accorded the necessary sanction to prosecute Mr Sarpotdar as he was then a member of the Legislative Assembly.

Another witness Subhash Awate, who was then additional commissioner of police, told the court that he had sought sanction from the state secretariat to prosecute Mr Sarpotdar.

According to the prosecution case, on December 27, 1992, Sarpotdar had addressed a gathering of Shiv Sainiks and made a provocative speech that had sparked violence.

UNI ST MAZ RL AS1739

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