FILE photo: Senior journalist Nikhil Wagle
In a new twist to the investigation into the murder of activist and CPI leader Govind Pansare, it appears that renowned Marathi journalist Nikhil Wagle was also the alleged target of right-wing groups suspected to have killed Mr Pansare.
According to police sources, Sameer Gaikwad, member of the Sanatan Sanstha, the extremist group suspected to be behind the killing of Mr Pansare, is allegedly heard in phone conversations saying that Mr Wagle is the next target after Mr Pansare.
Gaikwad was arrested in Maharashtra after his phone was placed under surveillance. In the phone intercepts, he is allegedly heard bragging about finishing off Mr Pansare.
CPI leader Govind Pansare was shot and killed in February this year when he was out for a morning walk in his hometown of Kolhapur, in the south west of Maharashtra.
Mr Wagle confirmed to NDTV that he has formally received an offer of security from Maharashtra police, but that he has turned it down.
In 2011, Mr Wagle hosted a TV show on Maharashtra's anti-superstition bill in which a member of the Sanatan Sanstha walked out in a huff. Since then, Mr Wagle says he has received numerous threats from the group.