Mumbai drunk driving: Have strong case against Janhavi Gadkar, say cops

Police said it has CCTV footage of hotel Marine Plaza where Gadkar consumed alcohol

Mumbai: The RCF police by Thursday had recorded statements of 10 eye-witnesses in the alleged drunk driving case where 35-year-old advocate Janhavi Gadkar, vice-president (legal) at Reliance, crashed her Audi Q3 into a taxi, killing two persons in the early hours of Tuesday. The police said that it has a “very strong” case with “enough evidence” to get Gadkar convicted for culpable homicide.

The RCF police said it has CCTV footage of hotel Marine Plaza where Gadkar consumed alcohol. The CCTVs are outside the hotel, as well as on the inside. Senior inspector Dilip Raut clarified that they had CCTV footage of the hotel, but not of the Eastern Freeway, which has no cameras.

“She is a lawyer so she will do her best to defend the charges, but we have a very strong case. We have collected enough evidence against Gadkar to make it a watertight case. There are more eyewitnesses coming forward. There is more evidence that needs to be verified,” said a senior officer from the eastern region.

Gadkar has told the police that she does not remember anything after getting on to P D’Mello Road, but an official said she was lying. The police has got a tip-off that Gadkar had gone to Irish House pub in south Mumbai again, but that needs to be verified.

Those whose statements were recorded include family members of the deceased who were also injured in the accident, Janhavi’s colleagues who got drunk with her at the hotel and the hotel staff of Marine Plaza.

The police said her friends and hotel authorities could not be blamed for allowing her to drive, as Gadkar is a “mature” person. She also lied to the police that she had two pegs and paid a bill of Rs 2,000 when the bill said she had six pegs of whiskey and her bill was Rs 4,500.

Gadkar was also involved in another minor accident last week where she hit a bike, but she “settled” the matter with the victims who worked as guards for BARC. The police said she was not drunk at the time. Gadkar, the police said, has no internal injuries as claimed by her lawyer. She has a bruise on her hand and it was swollen on Thursday for which she was taken to Sion Hospital.

The police said it would soon record her statements before a magistrate. The police has not taken Gadkar’s urine samples. Her blood report is awaited. Senior advocate Abha Singh told The Asian Age, “With permission, they could have taken the urine samples. But in the Salman Khan fatal hit-and-run accident too blood samples were taken and he was convicted.”

( Source : dc correspondent )
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