BMW hit-and-run case: Father told son to flee, knows his whereabouts, police tells court

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Mumbai, Jul 8 (PTI) Mumbai police on Monday said Rajesh Shah, father of absconding prime accused Mihir Shah in the BMW hit-and-run case, instructed the latter to escape from the spot after the incident, in which a woman was killed and her husband injured.

He also instructed the family's driver, who was in the car at the time, to take responsibility for the incident, the police told court.

Police also produced in court CCTV footage, which showed Kaveri Nakhwa being dragged by the car for 1.5 kilometres. Footage showed Mihir Shah and co-accused Rajrishi Bidawat pulling the woman off the bonnet, placing her on the road and then mowing her down again while reversing the luxury vehicle.

Kaveri Nakhwa was travelling with her husband Pradip on the arterial Annie Besant Road in Worli when the luxury car rear-ended their two-wheeler around 5.30 am on Sunday.

After the accident, the accused fled towards the Bandra-Worli Sea Link, abandoned the car near Kala Nagar in Bandra and fled.

Rajesh Shah, a Sena leader from neighbouring Palghar district, and the family's driver Rajrishi Bidawat, who was in the car at the time of the incident, were arrested on Sunday.

Main accused Mihir Shah, Rajesh Shah and Bidawat were charged under several provisions, including culpable homicide not amounting to murder.

The duo was produced in the court of Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (Sewree) SP Bhosale, who remanded Rajesh Shah in 14-day judicial custody and sent Bidawat to one-day police custody.

Rajesh Shah was remanded in judicial custody after the court observed that Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita (BNS) section 105 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) did not apply to him.

During the remand hearing, police told court Mihir Shah called his father after the incident and the latter told his son to flee.

Rajesh Shah also asked Mihir Shah to tell Bidawat to take the driver's seat, the police told court.

Rajesh Shah knows the whereabouts of his son and, therefore, needs to be interrogated, the police said in the remand hearing.

The defence, represented by advocate Sudhir Bhardwaj, submitted police had CCTV footage but that was not mentioned in the remand.

If the son is missing, is that a reason to arrest the father, Bhardwaj argued.

Is it not normal for a son to call his father when in panic, the defence further submitted.

Bhardwaj said the charge of culpable homicide was not applicable on Rajesh Shah since he was not driving the car nor was he present at the spot.

He also said custody of Bidawat was not required since nothing was recovered from him.

After Rajesh Shah was remanded in judicial custody, his lawyer applied for bail, which was allowed by the court.

Meanwhile, police have formed several teams to arrest Mihir Shah. A Look Out Circular (LOC) has also been put out to prevent the main accused from fleeing the country. PTI AVI RSY BNM

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