Goa Police Team in Haryana to Investigate Sonali Phogat Case, Family Wants CBI Probe

A Goa Police team arrived here Wednesday to investigate the alleged murder of BJP leader Sonali Phogat, amid renewed demands from her relatives and the local community that the case should be handed over to the CBI. The Goa team went to the Sadar police station and also visited Phogat’s farmhouse in Dhandhoor, about 10 km from Hisar on the road to Sirsa.

A gathering of the local Dhaka`khap’ was held outside the farmhouse. Khap members shouted slogans against the Goa Police and carried placards demanding a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation. “We are not satisfied with the investigations being conducted into the Sonali Phogat case. If the family’s demand for a CBI probe is not met, we will not hesitate to launch an agitation,” said a khap” member.

Phogat, 43, a former TikTok star and a contestant on the reality TV show “Big Boss”, was brought dead to a hospital in North Goa on August 23, a day after she arrived in the coastal state with two other people. The Goa Police have said Phogat was administered methamphetamine drugs at a restaurant hours before her death. So far, they have arrested five people.

Haryana police said full cooperation is being extended to Goa police in the case. In another development on Wednesday, Hisar police took a man into custody and were questioning him in connection with the alleged theft of a laptop, video recording equipment for CCTV cameras and some documents from the farmhouse.

The Haryana government has already written to the Goa government to recommend a CBI probe in the case, state Home Minister Anil Vij recently said. Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar had earlier assured this to the family. Phogat’s nephew Maninder told reporters that the visiting Goa team has recorded the statements of the family members.

Haryana BJP chief O P Dhankar also met the Phogat family and assured them that he will again ask the state government to urge Goa to recommend a CBI probe. Both states are BJP-run. “We reiterated our demand for a CBI probe,” Kuldeep Phogat, a relative, said after Dhankar met the family.

“We demand a CBI inquiry for a fair probe. So many days have passed. The Goa police should have been able to establish the reason for her murder by now. Only a CBI probe can bring out the truth,” he said. The family members plan to meet CM Khattar again on Thursday to demand a CBI probe. If the inquiry is not ordered, family members will go to Delhi and raise their demand with the Centre, a relative said.

Some relatives have alleged that Phogat’s associate Sudhir Sangwan was eyeing her property. The family had alleged that Sangwan’s aide Shivam had taken CCTV recording equipment, a laptop and some documents from the farmhouse after her death. The Haryana police have taken the man into custody.

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