Bengaluru: Slain journalist-activist Gauri Lankesh's sister Kavitha Lankesh on Thursday came out against any move to handover the murder case to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), claiming that the Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the Karnataka police had made a lot of progress by arresting 16 suspects.

Kavitha said, if the state government agreed to the CBI probe, she would seek to implead herself in the matter in the Supreme Court and oppose it.

Kavitha’s comments come in the backdrop of the apex court recently favouring CBI probe into the murders of Gauri, rationalist MM Kalburgi and social activist Govind Pansare if there was a "common thread" in these incidents, linking them over the last five years. 

Speaking to MyNation, Kavitha said that SIT has done a tremendous job when compared to the CBI, that has not made much progress in author Narendra Dhabolkar case nearly seven years after his murder. 

“The SIT has gone ahead in the probe. The second charge sheet has also been filed. At this point there is no point taking it to the CBI. Actually, the CBI has not done anything much when considering Dhabolkar murder case that happened nearly seven years ago. Even Amol Kale, arrested in Gauri case, has been taken for questioning by the CBI. Even after 90 days, they have not filed a charge sheet and they are out on bail. But the Karnataka cops have done a tremendous job. It's better that the SIT deals with it because the CBI has not done anything much in this regard actually. Even the high court has reprimanded the CBI stating that nothing is happening in the Dhabolkar case. So why give it to the CBI now," she questioned. 

"The SIT led by IG BK Singh and investigation officer MN Anucheth did brilliant work by arresting the accused in the case. It filed two charge sheets also. When there is so much headway, it does not make any sense to hand over the case to the CBI," Kavitha added.

However, Kalburgi's son Sreevijaya said he was having faith in the judiciary and whatever it did will be in the best interests of his family.

"We will go by whatever the judiciary feels is good. At the end of the day, we want justice in the case," he said.

On December 11, a bench of Justices UU Lalit and Navin Sinha of the Supreme Court had asked the CBI, already probing the killing of Dabholkar, to inform by January first week whether it would like to investigate the three other cases too.

The bench observed that one probing agency should investigate all the four cases, if prima facie it appears that there is a "common thread" in the murders.

Earlier, the Karnataka Police, in its status report, told the top court that there appears to be an "intimate connection" between the murders of Kalburgi in 2015 and Gauri Lankesh in 2017.

Gauri Lankesh was shot dead in front of her house in Bengaluru on September 5, 2017 and the SIT has so far arrested 16 people for their alleged involvement in the killing while two others are still at large.

* With inputs from PTI