The main suspect and accused in the Sonali Phogat murder, Sudhir Sangwan, has confessed his crime before the police. The accused has confessed also to hatching a conspiracy to murder, according to a source in Goa Police. However, Goa DGP Jaspal Singh has denied it, saying that the media will be informed duly whatever is found from the investigation.
According to the police source, Sangwan had brought Phogat from Gurugram to Goa as part of the conspiracy. There were no plans to shoot in Goa.
The conspiracy to kill Sonali was hatched long ago. Goa Police gathered some solid evidence in the murder case, which is enough to convict Sangwan.
Meanwhile, Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant has directed the police to file the charge sheet at the earliest.
A team from the Anjuna police station in Goa is investigating the murder that took place in Goa's Curlies restaurant on 23 August. A case of murder has been registered against Sangwan and Sukhwinder Singh while a case of NDPS Act has been registered against both of them and room boy Datta Prasad Gaonkar, owner of Curlies Club Edwin and Rama Mandrekar. The police arrested all the five suspects.
After Sangwan and Singh hatched the conspiracy to kill Sonali Phogat, Datta Prasad provided drugs to Sangwan for Rs 12,000. Sangwan paid Dutta twice — once Rs 5,000 and then Rs 7,000.
The owner of the restaurant, Edwin, did not oppose the use of contraband in his restaurant. Rama Mandrekar, who is a drug smuggler, gave Datta Prasad the drugs that he passed on to Sangwan.
Official version of Sonali Phogat murder
According to Goa DGP Jaspal Singh, Sangwan and Singh confessed that they forcefully drugged Sonali on the night of 22 August. She was administered methamphetamine , which was mixed in water. The trio snorted MDMA in their hotel room and Sanswan took the MDMA left in the water bottle to Curlies Club. On CCTV, Sangwan is seen offering Phogat the same drink.
When Sonali Phogat's health deteriorated at around 2:30 PM due to drug overdose, both of them took her to the washroom. There, Sonali vomited.
After some time, she came back and started dancing. Then, she went to the toilet again around 4:30 pm, but she could neither walk nor stand.
When Sangwan and Singh took her away, Phogat slept in the toilet. The three sat there.
In the morning, the aides took Sonali Phogat to the parking area first. From there, they brought her to the Grand Leoni Resort, from where she was taken to the hospital. They hid the container of drugs inside the women's toilet.
According to the case diary of Goa Police, both Sonali's PA Sudhir Sangwan and his accomplice Singh have confessed, but senior officers authorised to talk to reporters are tight-lipped.
According to Inspector Prashal Naik of the Anjuna police station, the diary says that he received a call from the medical officer from St Anthony's Hospital at 9:22 AM on 23 August, following which he reached the hospital. He was told at the hospital that Sonali Phogat had died before she could be brought there.
The police diary says further that when Sangwan and Singh were at the Curley's restaurant, Sonali told Sangwan that she was not feeling well, after which she was taken to the women's toilet around 2:30 PM, where she vomited. She then came back and resumed dancing.
The police diary says that Sangwan again took Phogat to the toilet again at 4:30 in the morning when she asked him to. This time, Sonali fell asleep or passed out inside the toilet. At around 6 in the morning, Sangwan and Singh took the help of two more men to take Sonali to the parking lot of the restaurant, from where they reached Grand Leoni Resort in a taxi. At the resort, Phogat's health started deteriorating, after which she was taken to St Anthony's Hospital.
Officially, however, the police is not divulging the details above.
Sudhir Sangwan's confession was found on the third page of the diary. In this confession, Sudhir told that he took Sonali to Curlies in the name of the party, where he forced her to drink by mixing drugs in water. In his confession, Sudhir told that Singh helped him in taking drugs. Singh also accepted this fact.
In the confession, Sudhir further told that he had mixed the drugs in a water bottle, which was also given to Sonali and Singh himself. Sudhir then took the policemen to the toilet in Curleys where they had hidden the drugs. The drugs were hidden inside the flush, which was recovered by the police.
BJP leader's diary
Goa Police visited late BJP leader and actress Sonali Phogat's house in Haryana's Hisar yesterday and seized three diaries from the place during the third visit. The police search team inspected her bedroom, wardrobe and password-protected locker. The cops then sealed the locker.
According to sources, the diaries recovered had a record of Sonali Phogat's money given through her personal assistant Sudhir Sangwan. The diary mentions her investment in several states including Haryana. Phogat's income and expenses find mention in the diary too.
There are names and numbers of some politicians and some bureaucrats working for Phogat in the diary.
Goa Police Inspector Theron D'Costa who, along with a team of Goa Police, went to Hisar a few days ago, said, "We are still investigating and scrutinizing the case. A conclusion can be drawn once we are through with the investigation."
Meanwhile, Phogat's brother Vatan Dhaka said, "I received a call from Goa Police in the morning, requesting another search of our Sant Nagar apartment, where they had spent nearly 3 h today (2 September). The police had locked the locker of Sonali Phogat and they had taken three diaries with them." Aman Punia, the late BJP leader's brother-in-law, said that the electronic locker had been sealed after it could not be opened.
Meanwhile, three persons arrested in connection with Phogat's death were remanded in judicial custody for 7 days by a court in Goa. Phogat, whose death the police now consider a case of murder, had died some hours after her arrival in the coastal state in late August.
A police investigation into her death had led to the arrest of her personal assistant Sangwan, another aide Singh, restaurateur Edwin Nunes, alleged drug peddlers Dattaprasad Gaonkar and Ramdas Mandrekar.
Sonali Phogat, 42, was declared dead at the St Anthony Hospital at Anjuna in North Goa on August 23. A post-mortem report revealed blunt force injury on her body, following which the Goa Police registered a murder case. Phogat's PA and his associate were arrested after police accessed the CCTV footage in which the trio were seen partying at a club.
The actor, who rose to fame with her TikTok videos, contested the 2019 Haryana election as a BJP candidate but lost to then Congress leader Kuldeep Bishnoi (he has since joined the BJP). She also appeared in the reality show Bigg Boss in 2020.