Prime accused in Sonawane murder case dead

Mumbai, Jan 31 (PTI) Popat Shinde, prime accused in themurder of Additional District Collector Yashwant Sonawane,died here today at a state-run hospital while undergoingtreatment for burn injuries.

"Shinde died this afternoon. After conducting postmortem,the body would be handed over to police investigating themurder case of Sonawane," P P Lahane, Dean at J J hospitaltold PTI.

According to the FIR in the case, Shinde, helped by hisson Kunal, and their aides--Balerao and Shirsat--, hadallegedly poured kerosene on Sonawane and torched him onJanuary 25 at Manmad in Nashik district after the Collectorobjected to oil pilferage.

Shinde had sustained 70 per cent burns in the incidentand had been rushed next day to J J hospital, where he wasundergoing treatment.

His condition deteriorated in the last couple of days andhe had been kept under observation, doctors said.

Eleven persons, including Shinde, were arrested inconnection with Sonawane''s murder.

Police had tried to record Shinde''s statement but couldnot do so as he could not speak.

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