Renukaswamy murder case: Bengaluru court extends police custody of actor Darshan, 3 others

PTI, Jun 20, 2024, 6:24 PM IST

Bengaluru: A Bengaluru court on Thursday extended police custody of Kannada actor Darshan Thoogudeepa and three other accused in the Renukaswamy murder case by two days.

Dhanaraj, Vinay and Pradosh are the other three whose police custody was extended.

Thirteen other accused, including the actor’s friend Pavithra Gowda, were remanded to 14 days’ judicial custody.

A total of 17 people are accused in the murder case.

All the accused were produced before Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Judge Vishwanath C Goudar as their police custody ended on Thursday.

According to police sources, Renukaswamy, a fan of the actor, had sent obscene messages to Gowda, which enraged Darshan, allegedly leading to his murder. His body was found near a storm-water drain next to an apartment in Sumanahalli here on June 9.

Darshan has confessed to have given Rs 30 lakh to another accused Pradosh for the disposal of the body and to ensure that “his name does not come out anywhere,” police have claimed.

The amount has been recovered from Pradosh’s residence, police sources said.

“Darshan, who is accused number 2 (A2) in the case, has in his voluntary statement to police said that he had given Rs 30 lakh to Pradosh (A14) to dispose of the body, and

for the expenditure that would cost…for persons to carry out this task –and to ensure that his name doesn’t come anywhere,” a police official said.

“From the spot of the crime, things such as lathi and wooden logs used for the alleged assault have been recovered along with water bottle, blood stains and material evidence, DVR containing the CCTV footage,” the official said, adding, “blood stains were also found on the vehicle allegedly used for disposing of the body”

According to the post-mortem report, Renukaswamy’s death was caused due to shock and haemorrhage as a result of multiple blunt injuries sustained. “Viscera samples have been sent to the Forensic Science Laboratory for further analysis,” he said.

Sources said one of the accused, Raghavendra, who is part of Darshan’s fan club in Chitradurga, had brought Renukaswamy to a shed in R R Nagar here, on the pretext that Darshan wanted to meet him. It was in this shed that he was allegedly tortured and killed.

The investigation team is believed to have gathered enough evidence including CCTV footage, which could establish that Darshan was present during the alleged assault on Renukaswamy, leading to his death, sources said.

Bengaluru Police Commissioner B Dayananda has termed the murder “a heinous crime committed in a horrific manner.”

“…the individual has been killed in a very brutal and barbaric way…,” he said earlier this week.

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