Breakthrough in actor Darshan case, driver surrenders

Friday, 14 June 2024 - 14:32

Bengaluru: The investigation into the murder case of a man in which a popular Kannada actor and his girlfriend are accused got new legs today with the surrender of a driver.

Ravi, the driver, had taken Renuka Swamy - whose body was found later - from Karnataka's Chitadurga to state capital Bengaluru, 200 km apart.

Darshan Thoogudeepa alias 'Challenging Star', co-star and girlfriend Pavithra Gowda, and 11 others are in police custody for allegedly killing Renuka Swamy. Ms Gowda had asked Mr Thoogudeepa to punish Renuka Swamy for allegedly posting derogatory comments on her social media uploads.

The driver Ravi surrendered to the Deputy Superintendent of Police's office in Chitradurga on Thursday night.

Another accused identified as Raghu alias Raghavendra had, along with others, arranged a taxi to take Renuka Swamy to Bengaluru on June 8. All the accused had boarded Ravi's cab in Chitradurga city and reached Bengaluru later that evening.

Ravi went into hiding after dropping them off in Bengaluru. Later, he reached out to the taxi association in Chitradurga, who told him to surrender to the police, sources said.

Raghu ran a fan club of the Kannada actor in Chitradurga. The actor hired him to gather information about Renuka Swamy, the police had said. Renuka Swamy's wife alleged he was kidnapped from near their house.

Now, CCTV footage has emerged showing two cars being driven away from near the spot where the body was dumped on the night of the murder. One of the cars is linked to the murder accused actor.

The actor and his aides then took him to a shed in Bengaluru's Kamakshipalya, where Darshan allegedly thrashed Renuka Swamy with a belt while his aides beat him with sticks until he fell unconscious. He was slammed against a wall, which led to multiple fractures all over his body.

When the body was found by a food delivery rider, dogs were nibbling on his body.

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