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Maharashtra: Pune govt hospital's medical officer arrested in drug racketeer Lalit Patil escape case

Police in Maharashtra’s Pune arrested a medical officer of the Sassoon General Hospital in connection with the case of drug racketeer Lalit Patil's escape from the government-run facility, newswire PTI reported quoting an official on Tuesday.

Dr Pravin Devkate, the hospital's medical officer, was placed under arrest late Monday night, the official said.

Patil, who was wanted in a multi-crore mephedrone seizure case, escaped from the Sassoon General Hospital on October 2 when he was taken for an X-ray. He was apprehended in Bengaluru on October 17, more than two weeks after his escape.

The police on Monday arrested Dr Sanjay Kashinath Marsale, the chief medical officer of Yerawada Central Jail, in the case under section 223 (escape from confinement or custody negligently suffered by public servant) and other relevant provisions of the Indian Penal Code, the official said.

According to the police, Marsale had allegedly gone out of the way to shift Patil from the jail to Sassoon General Hospital on the pretext of treatment.

As many as 13 people have been arrested in the case so far.

The Pune city police on September 30 arrested a man from outside the Sassoon General Hospital with mephedrone worth Rs 2 crore.

A probe into it led to the arrest of a hospital canteen staffer who revealed the contraband was supplied by Patil, the jail inmate admitted at the hospital at the time.

Patil, however, escaped from the hospital on October 2, leading to the suspension of nine police personnel.

Patil was wanted in connection with the seizure of mephedrone worth Rs 300 crore in a two-month-long operation, which included a raid at a drug manufacturing unit in Nashik.

On October 21, Sakinaka police, during their investigation into drug lord Lalit Patil's case, discovered that through his sophisticated gang network, he managed to supply approximately 150 kg of mephedrone (MD) worth Rs 300 crore in Mumbai alone.

This was done while he was receiving treatment at Sassoon General Hospital in Pune. The shocking revelation has prompted the department to further delve into his intricate network and suppliers he had in the city.

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