RTI activist found dead at home near Pune

Pune, March 25;

The body of a prominent Right to Information (RTI) activist, Vilas Baravkar was found hanging in his house in suburban Chakan town near here Tuesday morning, police said. They believed it to be a case of suicide.

The police have recovered a suicide note from Baravkar’s home in Chakan, 33 km from Pune, police officials told media persons.

The two-page, hand-written suicide note on a Rs.100 stamp paper has named at least four dozen people, including well-known politicians, police personnel and lower-level government officials as responsible for his suicide.

Investigating officer Kishore Patil said all details in the note would be investigated.

Police would also probe his past complaints against various people pertaining to land scams and illegal constructions in and around the Chakan area, Patil said.

Over the past few years, Baravkar had gained a formidable reputation as a whistle-blower against unauthorised building activities in the area.

Several RTI activists working in the fields of realty, environment, sand mining and other fields have been either attacked or killed across the state in the past few years.

Among those who lost their lives in such attacks are Satish Shetty and Arun Sawant (both in January 2010), Vitthal Gite (April 2010), Dattatray Patil (May 2010), Ramdas Ghadegaonkar (August 2010), Premnath Jha (February 2012), and Rajesh Bobade (September 2012).


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