File photo of protest against the assassination of Kannada journalist Gauri Lankesh in Bengaluru

37-year-old Naveen Kumar, who reportedly has links with radical Hindutva outfits, has been arrested on Friday by the SIT set up to probe the murder of Kannada journalist Gauri Lankesh six months ago

A 37-year-old was arrested in Bengaluru on Friday in connection with the murder of Kannada journalist Gauri Lankesh six months ago, police said.

“Naveen Kumar, 37, has been arrested by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) and is an accused in the Gauri Lankesh case,” SIT investigation officer MN Anucheth told IANS in Bengaluru.

Kumar was detained on March 2 for questioning after he was booked by the Crime Branch on February 19 under the Arms Act for illegal possession of 15 bullets of a revolver. The accused hails from Birur town in Chikmagalur district, about 250 km west of Bengaluru, the police said.

“Based on certain clues provided by him, the SIT took him into custody for further questioning and investigation,” Anucheth had said earlier.

Lankesh, 55, Editor of Gauri Lankesh Patrike, was shot dead outside her residence here on September 5 last year. Of the seven bullets fired, three hit Lankesh, two in the chest and one in the forehead.

The government set up the SIT to probe the journalist-activist’s killing.

The Indian Express on March 2 had reported that SIT officials have already questioned Kumar on a few occasions since his arrest on February 18, adding that “Investigations have shown that Kumar is linked to a radical Hindutva outfit called the Hindu Yuva Senaand that he is also allegedly linked to members of the Sanatan Sanstha outfit and its affiliate the Hindu Janajagruti Samiti.”