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Uttar Pradesh: Senior Congress leader shot dead

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The motive behind the murder is not clear, police said.

A senior Congress leader was allegedly shot dead by unidentified persons in Sidhari area on Saturday.52-year-old Raj Narain Singh, president, cooperative cell of Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee (UPCC), was shot near Belaisa when he had gone for a walk this morning, Additional District Magistrate Ashutosh Dwivedi said.The leader had contested the state assembly election on Congress ticket in 1993 from Lalganj assembly segment, he said. The motive behind the murder is not clear, police said, adding that the probe was on. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

Sheena Bora wanted to stop pretending as Indrani’s sister: Rahul Mukerjea

In a statement recorded last month, Rahul, the son of former media baron and Sheena’s step-father Peter Mukerjea who is also an accused in the case, said that Indrani constantly kept changing her story about Sheena’s “disappearance” after her murder.
File Photo
Image Courtesy: Facebook
Sheena Bora wanted to stop pretending as sister of the key accused and her mother, Indrani Mukerjea before her murder in 2012, her fiance Rahul Mukerjea has said in his statement before magistrate. Indrani had introduced Sheena, her daughter from an earlier marriage, in Mumbai social circles as her younger sister.In a statement recorded last month, Rahul, the son of former media baron and Sheena’s step-father Peter Mukerjea who is also an accused in the case, said that Indrani constantly kept changing her story about Sheena’s “disappearance” after her murder. The copy of the statement was made available to defence advocates on Thursday.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Sheena said she felt that Vidhie (daughter of Indrani and her former husband Sanjeev Khanna) was being treated as her daughter, which she found very unfair,” Rahul said.Rahul, who used to stay with Sheena in a rented flat, also stated that in March 2009, just before Indrani and her colleague visited his flat at Khar in Mumbai, Peter had told him that Indrani was coming to his place and that she wanted to separate them. “Later Indrani came and took Sheena away,” he said.Two months later, Sheena contacted him and said that she was in Bangalore, he said.”Sheena communicated to me that she was in Bangalore and was not willing to stay with her former boyfriend Kaustubh Saikia, as he was trying to re-establish his relationship with her, to which she was not agreeing to,” Rahul said.”One day Kaustubh even hit a beer bottle on Sheena’s leg,” he said.According to Rahul, Sheena had told him that from the joint bank account (of Indrani and Sheena) Rs 15,000 had been withdrawn (which Sheena had not) and her mobile had also been disconnected.”In 2012, Sheena wanted to complete her further studies and was in need of funds and hence she resumed communications with Indrani,” he said.On April 24, 2012, (the day of her murder) Sheena had met Indrani, after he dropped her in suburban Bandra. However, when he tried to contact her again, Indrani sent text messages from Sheena’s mobile saying that she (Sheena) had met somebody else and also sought two months time to contact him (Rahul) again.Rahul said that after he went to Peter’s residence in Worli in south Mumbai and did not find Sheena there, he approached the police.”Police told me that if Sheena had gone with her mother, she would soon return. They also asked me not to worry and also that we were not yet married,” Rahul said. He also said that Indrani kept changing her story (about Sheena) constantly.Rahul said that he also met former Inspector General of Police Paramvir Singh and Sheena’s superior in Mumbai metro Shubhodoy Mukherjee, who advised him to file a missing person’s report. He said that police were unwilling to take the missing person’s complaint.Sheena (24) was allegedly strangled in a car and then her body burnt and dumped in a forest in Raigad, about 84 kms from Mumbai. Indrani (43), her former husband Sanjeev Khanna and her ex-driver Shyamvar Rai have been charge sheeted in the case. Peter, 59 was arrested on November 19 for his alleged role in the murder case.

Sheena Bora murder case: CBI to probe money angle in the case

Agency will go through all documents of financial transactions in the Mukerjea family
File Photo
Image Courtesy: Facebook
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has started its investigation into the financial angle that is believed to have led to Sheena Bora’s murder. The Maharashtra government transferred the case to the premier agency as it believed that CBI was well equipped to probe into the financial web connected to the murder that has spread across various cities in the country as well as abroad.According to CBI sources, the agency has until now been focusing on the people allegedly involved in the murder.”Till now, we were focusing on the murder part and trying to prove that it had taken place with proper planning. But now, we have got into the financial angle of the case and will be going through all the documents of financial transactions that have taken place in the Mukerjea family which could have link with Sheena,” said a source from the CBI.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The CBI on Thursday evening arrested former media honcho and main accused in the murder case Indrani Mukerjea’s husband Peter Mukerjea. “We have Peter’s custody for three days and will be interrogating him about the murder as well as about the financial transactions that were carried out by him in the last few years,” said a source from CBI.”We will, however, will investigate the financial angle that could have possible links with Sheena’s murder and in case in the course of the investigation if we find anything discriminating then we will get into the entire financial aspect of the Mukerjea’s empire,” he added.The CBI on Friday filed a 1,000-page charge sheet in the Sheena murder case against Indrani, her ex-husband Sanjeev Khanna and her former driver Shyamvar Rai. Interestingly, the charge sheet is quiet on the motive behind Sheena’s murder.

Cow slaughter: One more arrested in Bajrang Dal activist murder

Nine persons have so far been arrested for the murder of Prashant Poojary, a 29-year old flower vendor who was brutally hacked to death by six bike-borne men

Forty-year-old Mohammad Imtiaz Gantalkatte was picked up by immigration officials at Mumbai airport

Another accused in the murder of a Bajrang Dal activist Prashanth Poojary involved in busting illegal slaughter houses was arrested on Saturday before he was to fly to Dubai from Mumbai airport.Acting on a look-out circular set by Mangaluru Police to all airports across the country, 40-year-old Mohammad Imtiaz Gantalkatte was picked up by immigration officials at Mumbai airport, Additional Director General of Police Alok Mohan told reporters here. A team has been sent to Mumbai to bring the accused back to Mangaluru for investigation, he said. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>With this, nine persons have so far been arrested for the murder of Prashant Poojary, a 29-year old flower vendor who was brutally hacked to death by six bike-borne men at nearby Moodbidri on October nine. Mangaluru Police Commissioner S Murugan had earlier said the accused were upset over Poojary’s activities against illegal trafficking of cattle. The brutal attack had happened 12 days after 50-year-old Mohammad Akhlaq was lynched by a mob at Dadri in Uttar Pradesh over beef eating rumours, that led to a nation-wide outrage. A witness to the murder, Vaman Poojary, had allegedly committed suicide a week after Prashant Poojary’s killing, with Bajrang Dal saying he was facing threats to his life. Accusing Congress government in Karnataka of showing negligence in unearthing the “conspiracy” behind the murder, BJP has demanded handing over the case to CBI for probe.

CBI begins probe into Asaram witness murder case

The Uttar Pradesh government had on July 24 recommended a CBI probe into the murder of Gupta in a rape case against Asaram.

Self-styled rape accused godman Asaram

PTI
CBI has begun probe into the murder of a prime witness in a rape case against self-styled godman Asaram, and got all documents from the local police here.According to SHO of Newmandi police station AK Singh, all papers in connection with the Akhil Gupta murder case were handed over to the CBI on Friday. The Uttar Pradesh government had on July 24 recommended a CBI probe into the murder of Gupta in a rape case against Asaram.Related Read: Asaram speaks to media despite high court warning, claims he might have cancer<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>35-year-old Akhil was shot at by unidentified persons on January 11 this year. Subsequently, he was rushed to a nearby hospital where he was declared dead. He was a cook and personal aide of 74-year-old Asaram, who has been in jail since August, 2013, for allegedly sexually assaulting a 16-year-old schoolgirl.

Traces of cocaine, opiates in Indrani’s urine sample found in hospital test, says report

Traces of cocaine, opiates and amphetamines were found in the urine sample of Indrani Mukerjea, the prime accused in Sheena Bora Murder case, reported a leading daily.

Traces of cocaine, opiates and amphetamines were found in the urine sample of Indrani Mukerjea, the prime accused in the Sheena Bora Murder case, reports a leading daily.According to the report, the daily has accessed nine-page discharge summary which mentions details of conducted test. The report, citing discharge summary stated that traces of amphetamines, benzodiazepines, cocaine, methadone, opiates, phencyclidine and THC (tetra hydro cannabin) were found in the toxin screening test.It also stated that Indrani was taking an anti-anxiety drug. On October 2, Indrani had collapsed in jail, following which she was rushed to the hospital in a critical condition. However, Indrani had reportedly told the Byculla jail authorities that she had not attempted suicide as speculated and said that she had similar illness when she was 13 years old.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Meanwhile, Medical Education Minister Vinod Tawde has ordered a high-level probe into the entire episode, says report.Indrani, her former husband Sanjeev Khanna and driver Shyamvar Rai, all accused will be questioned in jail by CBI. Indrani and the two other accused were arrested in August-end on the charge of murdering her daughter in April 2012 and disposing of the body in a forest in Raigad district, about 84 km from here.Police had exhumed remains of a body and claimed digital superimposition of the profile of Sheena (24) had matched with the skull recovered from the forest. Mumbai Police had also grilled media baron Peter Mukerjea, Indrani’s husband, several times but he has not been made an accused in the case.The case, after witnessing several twists and turns since it came to light in August, was handed over to CBI by the Maharashtra Government in mid-September after much filp-flop on the supervisory role of Maria, who was shunted in the midst of the inquiry.

Indrani lapses into ‘deep sleep’, next 48 hours critical; JJ Hospital briefing at 3pm today

Mumbai: The mystery over whether Indrani Mukerjea, prime accused in the murder of her daughter Sheena Bora, attempted suicide deepened on Saturday amid conflicting forensic findings on suspected drug overdose even as she remained critical with next 48 hours being crucial for her.

Indrani Mukerjea who was admitted to a hospital in Mumbai in an unconscious state on Friday – has lapsed into “deep sleep” or stupor, though she is responding to treatment, a top hospital official said on Saturday.

Sir JJ Hospital’s dean TP Lahane said Indrani is responding to treatment and is now “critical but stable” and is under observation in the criticare centre.

Indrani Mukerjea in a file photo. IbnbliveIndrani Mukerjea in a file photo. Ibnblive

Indrani Mukerjea in a file photo. Ibnblive

Suspected to have made a suicide attempt, Indrani is under observation for 72 hours and the next 48 hours are critical, he told media persons here on Saturday.

“She is responding to voice commands, asked for water once but remains in a semi-conscious state. She is also on ventilator to help her breathe. We are waiting for the urine report to determine what could be the exact cause of her present condition,” said Lahane.

“She has not regained consciousness yet but we are trying our best. Indrani is still critical but is responding to treatment. We are closely monitoring her vital parameters,” Dr Lahane told PTI this morning.

He added that Ms Mukerjea was not on ventilator support, but was being given oxygen because she is not able to breath on her own.

Dr Lahane had on Saturday said that according to a report from Hinduja Hospital laboratory, the level of benzodiazepine – an anti-depressant – was found raised in her urine sample.

“Normally if a patient is on anti-depressant drug, the level of benzodiazepine in urine is 200. But in Indrani’s case, it is 2088. The report is positive for drug overdose. Anti-epileptic drugs have already been ruled out. The (test) has come negative. It is only the anti-depressant that has caused the thing (collapse),” he had said.

Indrani was rushed to Sir JJ Hospital after she complained of uneasiness and breathing issues around 2 pm on Friday. Earlier, doctors at the Byculla Jail where she is under judicial custody tried to treat her for over two hours.

Late Friday night, her condition was described serious as a series of medical tests were carried out, said Lahane.

“We think that she (Indrani) consumed some tablets… we are treating her on that basis,” he added.

When questioned about any possibility of foul play, Principal Secretary (Home) VS Singh said they would enquire into the matter and if anybody is found guilty, they would not be spared.

Times Now reports that, IG-prisons to submit report to Home Dept on Monday, jail staff and inmates statements have been recorded. There will be a JJ Hospital briefing at 3pm on Sunday.

However the news channel reports that Dr Nitin Chutke, the Deputy Director at the Government laboratory, has dismissed the overdose theory. The report goes on to add that there are no traces of any chemicals found in Indrani Mukerjea’s blood.
Officials said Indrani was reportedly prescribed to take two pills for epileptic problems, one in morning and one in evening, under the supervision of the jail authorities.

However, she apparently hoarded the tablets and took them at one go early on Friday leading to her present condition.

Though the motives behind her action is a matter of speculation, Indrani was in stress after her 82-year-old mother, Durga Rani Bora expired on Thursday in Guwahati.

Indrani was arrested on 25 August for her role in the murder of Sheena Bora, her daughter from a previous marriage, in April 2012.

Along with Indrani, her ex-husband Sanjeev Khanna and her former driver Shyamvar Rai were also nabbed, though the motive behind the murder is yet to be ascertained.

The sensational case was initially handled by Mumbai Police under the supervision of then police commissioner Rakesh Maria and later transferred to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) by the Maharashtra government after allegations of improper investigations.

The agency took over investigations on 29 September and lodged a separate case against the three accused.

Indrani, Khanna and Rai are in judicial custody since 7 September. Their present spell ends on Monday (5 October).

(With PTI and Ians inputs)

Dadri lynching: Owaisi slams Mahesh Sharma’s ‘accident’ remark, says victim killed over religion

Dadri/Lucknow: As tension simmered in Bishada where a man was lynched on Monday night over allegedly eating beef, Union Minister Mahesh Sharma on Friday sought punishment for those guilty without “victimising” the innocents, while tough talking AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi said the victim was killed because of his religious persuasion.

Four days after Bishada village on Delhi’s outskirts in Uttar Pradesh was rocked by the brutal killing of Mohammed Iqlakh, it witnessed an unending parade of politicians, who sympathised with the victim’s family and sought to cool frayed tempers as communal tension smouldered.

Sharma, also the local MP, persisted with his refrain that Iqlakh’s bludgeoning to death by the lynch mob was an “accident” which should not be given a communal colour and over which there should be no politics.

The victim's family. PTI

The victim’s family. PTI

“It is a blot on our culture and such incidents do not have a place in a civilised society. If somebody says it was pre-planned, I don’t agree with it. It is an accident and it should be probed by CBI or state and guilty should be punished. Innocents should not be victimised in the name of investigation,” Sharma, Minister of State for Tourism and Culture said at Bishada where he consoled the bereaved family.

Owaisi, who too paid a visit to the distraught family, could not disagree more when he described the killing as “a pre-planned murder”, actuated by the victim’s religious persuasion.

The sharp-tongued Hyderabad MP attacked both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the state’s Samajwadi Party government for the incident that has triggered a nation-wide outrage.

“We had expected that the least the Prime Minister, who talks of ‘sabka saath-sabka vikas’ (inclusivity)’, would tweet to condole Iqlakh’s murder.

“Yesterday, he had tweeted to condole famous singer Asha Bhosale’s son’s death. The ‘sabka saath-sabka vikas PM’ should have at least sent his condolences in a tweet if he believes in pluralism and upholding of law,” he said.

As political rivals locked horns over the incident, Bishada continued its uncomfortable tryst with media spotlight, while remaining under the protective shadow of the gun.

Contingents of Provincial Armed Constabulary and state police were strategically deployed across the village where prohibitory orders banning assembly of five or more people continued to be in force.

District Magistrate MP Singh claimed the situation was under control and reasoned that the incident should be treated as a “solitary case” and not a communal clash as no other Muslim family was affected.

Chiding Sharma for calling Iqlakh’s killing an accident, Owaisi said,”Mahesh Sharma is the Culture Minister of the country and it is unfortunate that the minister who has taken oath on the Constitution doesn’t have the courage and intellectual honesty to condemn the incident unconditionally.”

He rubbished claims that Iqlakh’s family was attacked because it had consumed beef.

“This attack was not because of meat. The SP government, instead of arresting the murderers, is getting a forensic test done on the meat found at the victim’s home. Their mind, which is full of poison, should be examined first. They are treating the victim as accused,” he said.

Miles away in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav trained his gun on Modi over a string of contoversies over cow slaughter and beef consumption.

“They want to rake up such issues. These forces talked about pink revolution. We say today you are in power, so ban beef exports. You should build support for banning its export,” he said in an apparent reference to Modi, who had in the run-up to last Lok Sabha elections attacked the then UPA government over meat exports, saying it was encouraging “pink revolution”.

The Chief Minister said the guilty will not be spared and his government will act with “full honesty”.

“A debate is going on all over the country over the incident and I assure you that those responsible for it will not be spared, however strong they might be,” he said.

Mahesh Sharma faced some anger from the locals who questioned the delay in visiting the victim’s family.

The Minister visited Iqlakh’s 22-year-old son Danish, who was critically wounded during the assault, at the hospital where he continues to battle for life. He has undergone brain surgery and is on ventilator.

“Danish is better now but is not completely out of danger. He is responding to verbal commands. His brother also accompanied me. He recognished him and held his hand too. His situation is much better but is not 100 per cent out of damger,” Sharma said.

The BJP MP also visited the local temple and met Hindus there who accused the police of acting in a biased way. Sharma said police should investigate the case impartially but not falsely implicate innocent people.

Addressing a gathering at the village, the Minister said the majority Hindus have promised to protect the Muslims.

As the political slugfest over Iqlakh’s killing continued, Shivpal Yadav, Samajwadi Party leader and younger brother of its chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, demanded dismissal of Sharma from the Union ministry.

“Mahesh Sharma should be immediately sacked from the Union Cabinet for his statement on Dadri lynching. The PM should also swing into action and give strict directions to prevent such planned incidents,” Shivpal, a senior UP minister, told reporters in Lucknow.

Terming the incident as handiwork of BJP and RSS, Yadav said they had orchestrated such incidents in the past too.

“Communal forces – BJP, RSS and Shiv Sena – are trying to vitiate communal atmosphere of the state. They have orchestrated such incidents in the past and are trying to do it again. We are alert, but they do communal politics and have succeeded in their designs sometimes,” he said.

“The Dadri incident was planned. They (BJP) are anti-Muslim and it is their habit to do such things,” the Samajwadi Party leader said.

Meanwhile, Mamata Banerjee‘s Trinamul Congress has questioned the Prime Minister’s continued silence on the killing, with its MP Sultan Ahmed demanding that he make a statement on communal incidents in the country and do something to stop RSS and fringe outfits from disrupting communal harmony.

“We want to know why Narendra Modi is silent on the recent killing of a person over rumours of consuming beef. This is nothing but spreading communal poison in the society and disrupting the fabric of the country,” Ahmed told PTI.

“Modi keeps on speaking about each and every issue. But he stays mum on various communal incidents. He should speak up in order to stop RSS, VHP from destroying communal peace,” he said.

PTI

Dadri lynching was a pre-planned killing linked to religion: Asaduddin Owaisi

Dadri: Controversial AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi on Friday visited the family of the man killed in Dadri by a mob following rumours that he and family had consumed beef and alleged that he was targeted for his religion as the political blame-game over the shocking incident intensified.

Asaduddin Owaisi. IBNLive

Asaduddin Owaisi. IBNLive

Owaisi, who heads the Muslim right wing All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM), met the wife of deceased Iqlakh this morning and hit out at the Samajwadi government, alleging instead of nabbing the attackers it was “investigating a piece of meat and treating the victim as accused”.

“This wasn’t an attack over meat. He has been killed in the name of religion. This is a pre-planned, cold-blooded killing. It cannot be an accident.

“This is the thought which is against secularism, it is against the brotherhood of India. It sees Muslims with an eye of suspicion,” the Hyderabad MP said.

Owaisi also hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his silence on the issue, saying the “Sabka Saath Sabka Vikaas PM” should have at least sent his condolences in a tweet if “he believes in pluralism and upholding of law”.

The AIMIM leader also hit out at Union Minister and local MP Mahesh Sharma who had termed the attack as an “accident”.

“Mahesh Sharma is the Culture Minister of the country and it is unfortunate that the minister who has taken oath on the Constitution doesn’t have the courage and intellectual honesty to condemn the incident unconditionally,” Owaisi said.

“He and his PM say ‘Sabka Saath Sabka Vikaas‘, then such incidents happen. These words should be put into practice,” he said.

Iqlakh was beaten to death and his 22-year-old son Danish was critically injured by a 200-strong mob which barged into their house on Monday night following rumours that the family had consumed beef. Cow slaughter is banned in Uttar Pradesh.

PTI

‘Who’ll ensure it won’t happen again’: Shocked muslims plan to leave village after lynching

Dadri/New Delhi: Shocked and shaken to the core, Muslims of Bishada village on the outskirts of the national capital, where a man was lynched over rumours of his family having eaten beef, are contemplating moving out as the local administration scrambled to stem simmering tension.

The Centre has, meanwhile, sought a detailed report from the Uttar Pradesh government on the incident and asked it to ensure that no such incidents recur.

The victim's family. PTI

The victim’s family. PTI

Heavy security deployment in the aftermath of the Monday night incident has failed to instill confidence among the 50 odd Muslim families, who unnerved by the killing of 50-year-old Mohammed Iqlakh, want to shift to safer places. Iqlakh was dragged out of his home by a lynch mob of 200 people and beaten to death for allegedly eating beef.

“Our lives are in danger. I’m planning to move from here. We will move from here because this can happen again anytime. Who will ensure us that this won’t happen again?” said a distraught Sartaj, Iqlakh’s son, who serves in the Indian Air Force.

The victim’s another son, 22-year-old Danish, who was mercilessly assaulted, is recuperating in a hospital.

“We will move out to our relatives in Delhi or other states if the situation here deteriorates any further,” said Raisuddin, another resident.

However, District Magistrate NP Singh claimed the situation in the village is “under control” and the administration is making efforts to maintain order by forming peace committees with representation from both the majority and minority communities.

As the situation threatened to spiral out of control following incident, contingents of Provincial Armed Constabulary and reinforcements from adjoining Ghaziabad, Bulandshahr and Hapur had been rushed to the village.

Sartaj said his father was suffering from typhoid and had low blood pressure when the mob bludgeoned him to death. He said he was not aware of any tension in the village preceding the incident.

“As far as I know, there wasn’t any tension. Everything was normal. I spoke to my father an hour before the incident and asked about his well being. He was suffering from typhoid and his BP was below normal. Rest was fine till then. He was dragged outside the house, obviously neighbours were involved,” he said.

“Those arrested murdered my father. I want to know the reason for which they did this to him. They should be punished so that none from the village would dare to do such a deed in future,” Sartaj said, adding his family was contemplating moving out of the village as such incidents could happen any time.

Iqlakh’s wife demanded a CBI inquiry into the incident. Recalling the incident, she said,”There was a lot of noise and they were banging our doors and abusing us. The entered the house by jumping a wall from the other side. Then they started misbehaving and vandalising things after which they mercilessly thrashed us.”

Additional District Magistrate Rajesh Kumar met the victim’s family and other members of the Muslim community and assured protection.

Seven people allegedly involved in the incident have already been arrested, while hunt is on for others.

SP(Rural) Sanjay Singh said a priest at the local temple, who made the announcement on the public address system about the family having consumed beef, and two youths, who allegedly forced him to do that, were “major links” to the incident.

“Further interrogation will reveal the exact sequence of events. The victim’s family has alleged it was pre-planned,” he said.

Iqlakh’s kin have rubbished the charge of consuming beef and said they had eaten mutton. Even the FIR has no mention of beef.

Enraged over the incident, a Muslim resident of the village said,”Even if it was beef, does it give any right to BJP activists to attack the house and kill the man because he has eaten beef.”

“It is fact that Muslim community eats beef. But they never slaughter cows in public view. Beef is available in several other states openly in shops. Slaughtering should not be done in public view to hurt the sentiment of any community. If one is doing inside the house or buying beef from slaughter house and eating it at home it should not be treated as sin. We should have freedom to eat. We are not forcing others to eat beef,” another local said.

The incident has set off a blame game between BJP and the state’s ruling Samajwadi Party.

“This (incident) should be considered an accident without giving any communal colour to it,” Union Minister Mahesh Sharma, the local BJP MP, told reporters in Delhi.

He said, “I feel this incident occurred due to some misunderstanding and the law should truthfully act against whoever is responsible.”

With tension gripping the area, the ruling Samajwadi Party hit out at BJP over Iqlakh’s killing, accusing it of deliberately inciting violence ahead of 2017 assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh as part of efforts to polarise voters.

“BJP has been inciting large scale violence in UP ahead of the assembly polls. Such incidents are occurring repeatedly after the Muzaffarnagar violence,” said State cabinet Minister Azam Khan.

Reacting to SP leader’s charge, BJP MP Yogi Adityanath said the UP government was responsible for “jungle-raj” in the state. “Jungle-raj prevails in UP and the government backs the professional criminals and mafia to hide its failure. There is a complete anarchy in the state.”

The Congress, on its part, accused BJP of making UP a “communal lab” to gain electoral mileage. “UP has been made a communal lab by BJP so that they can enhance their vote bank. The PM can continue to talk about development but it is extremely evident the real path of BJP is communal hatred,” said Congress leader and former Union minister RPN Singh.

Meanwhile, in a communication to the Uttar Pradesh government, the Home Ministry has sought a report on the incident. It asked the state government to apprehend those responsible for it at the earliest and punish them.

PTI

Centre seeks report from UP govt on lynching of a man in Dadri over cow slaughter rumour

New Delhi: Concerned over lynching of a man in Dadri for allegedly consuming beef, the Centre on Thursday sought a detailed report from the Uttar Pradesh government over the incident and asked it to ensure that no such incident recurs.

Representational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

In a communication, the Home Ministry told the state government that a report about lynching of the 50-year-old man should be sent to it as early as possible and the steps taken to find the guilty and punish them.

The Home Ministry has also sent an advisory to the Uttar Pradesh government asking it to ensure that no such incident takes place anywhere in the state in future.

Iqlakh was beaten to death and his 22-year-old son Danish was critically injured by a 200-strong mob which barged into their house at Dadri in Greater Noida on Monday night following rumours that the family had consumed beef. Cow slaughter is banned in Uttar Pradesh.

As police intensified security, the distraught family of Iqlakh said they were planning to move out of this Uttar Pradesh village, apprehending more attacks on it.

PTI

Delhi: Six-year-old boy allegedly murdered, body hanged from a tree

New Delhi: A six-year-old boy was allegedly murdered and then his body hanged from a tree, after suspected sexual assault, at a secluded spot in south Delhi’s Dhaula Kuan area, police said on Wednesday.

Representational image. PTI

Representational image. PTI

The boy went missing on Tuesday evening and a case of abduction was registered at the South Campus police station, said a senior police officer.

According to the police, the incident came to light around 11.45 am on Wednesday when a passer-by saw the semi-nude body of the boy hanging from a tree and called up the police control room.

The limbs of the body were also found to be tied with a rope. A police team rushed the boy to hospital, where he was declared brought dead.

Investigation was taken up and the first task was to ascertain the identity of the boy. A message was sent to all police stations and it emerged that a boy of similar age was reported missing from a slum cluster in Delhi University’s south campus area last evening. The parents of the missing boy later identified the body.

From preliminary investigation, it appears that the boy was allegedly strangulated in the wee hours of the day, after a suspected sexual assault suggested by the condition of the clothes and other vital evidences, and then hanged from the tree with the help of a rope, said the senior officer.

The body has been sent for post-mortem examination and the report shall bring to fore the time and cause of death, and also whether the boy was sexually assaulted, said the officer.

The case was later transferred from South West district of Delhi Police – which covers the area where the body was found – to South district, where the abduction case was already registered and other relevant sections were added to the existing FIR, said the officer.

PTI

Property dispute ruled out as motive by CID in writer MM Kalburgi’s murder

The CID is still investigating all the leads in the murder of Kalbargi that occurred on August 20 in Dharwad.

PTI
Investigation into the murder of noted Kannada writer MM Kalburgi took a bit of a twist with reports suggesting that he could have been murdered for property. HC Kishore Chandra, the DGP of Criminal Investigation Department (CID) was in Dharwad on Monday to speak to Kalburgi’s family members. Earlier, the police had stated that a fight over property could be a motive but Chandra told NDTV post his investigation that property dispute has been ruled out as a cause for the murder.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Chandra also met the CID Superintendent of Police, DC Rajappa, and Hubballi-Dharwad Police Commissioner Pandurang Rane. He also spoke to Kalburgi’s neighbour, Kannada poet Channaveera Kanavi and others in the locality.The CID is still investigating all the leads in the murder of Kalburgi that occurred on August 20 in Dharwad, Karnataka.Also Read: After Kalburgi’s murder, writer KS Bhagwan gets threat letter

UP shocker: Two days before she had to testify in court, 18-year-old rape victim shot dead

Mau: An 18-year-old rape victim was on Sunday shot dead allegedly by bike-borne youths in Baijapur village in Dakshintola area, two days before she had to appear in a court as witness in the case, police said.

Representational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

The incident occurred when the girl along with her brother was going to visit a doctor, and died of bullet injuries on the spot, they said.

The girl was allegedly raped on 6 June, 2011 by one BK Singh, Manager of a college, police said, adding the case was going on in the local court, where she had to appear as witness after two days.

The victim’s family members have alleged that she was killed upon the directions of the rape accused, they said.

Police is trying to workout the case and the guilty will not be spared, Additional Superintendent of Police Sunil Kumar Singh said.

PTI

MM Kalburgi murder: Author Uday Prakash to return Sahitya Akademi award

On one side we boast of freedom of expression by giving shelter to writers like Taslima Nasreen but on the other same things are happening here now,” Prakash said anout MM Kalburgi’s (above) murder

File Photo
Noted Hindi author Uday Prakash has decided to return Sahitya Akademi award as a mark of protest against the murder of Kannada scholar and researcher Prof MM Kalburgi. “Murder of Kannada researcher Prof Kalburgi has shaken me to the core. I will return the cash prize and citation to the Akademi once I reach Delhi on September 8,” Prakash said over phone from his native village Sitapur in Anuppur district of MP.Prakash was awarded the Sahitya Akademi award in 2010 for his stories collection ‘Mohan Das’. “Authors, artists and rationalists of our country are regularly being attacked. On one side we boast of freedom of expression by giving shelter to writers like Taslima Nasreen but on the other same things are happening here now,” Prakash said. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The author denied taking the decision under political influence. “I have not taken this decision under the influence of any political party but as a mark of protest against the attacks on authors and artists,” Prakash said. Since the authors do not have any security they have become easy targets, Prakash added.Former Vice-Chancellor of Hampi University, M M Kalburgi, who won the Sahitya Akademi award for his collection of research articles in 2006, was shot at his residence in Karnataka by unidentified assailants on August 30. 77-year old Kalburgi was rushed to the civil hospital where he died without responding to treatment. Kalburgi, who had won the central and state Sahitya Akademi awards, had often stirred a hornet’s nest with his remarks on various issues, including opposing idol worship and suggesting the need for a better state anthem. Part of his works on ‘Vachana'(verses) literature had also come under criticism of the state’s majority ‘veerashaiva’ (Lingayat) community.Kalburgi had raised the hackles of some right-wing outfits like VHP and Bajrang Dal when he had made certain remarks about idol worship by Hindus that were considered “derogatory” and “blasphemous” by them.

Kalburgi murder: Rationalist’s cold blooded killing shocks Karnataka’s literary capital

By Aravind S Kamal

Dr. MM. Kalburgi (78), renowned Kannada writer, research scholar and rationalist has entered the history books as the first litterateur from Karnataka to be shot dead allegedly for his views on idol worship and Hindu rituals. Though no group or persons have claimed responsibility for shooting Dr. Kalburgi at point blank range at his home on Sunday morning, initial reports suggest that right wing activists might be involved.

Dr Kalburgi PTI image.Dr Kalburgi PTI image.

Dr Kalburgi PTI image.

People and political leaders in Dharwad, the literary capital of Karnataka that has produced the highest number of Jnanpith awardees in Kannada, are still in a state of shock and disgust. For, this kind of cold-blooded murder targeting litterateurs was unheard of Karnataka till date.

Born in Vijayapura (Bijapur) district in 1938, Dr. Kalburgi studied Kannada literature and taught at the Department of Kannada, Karnatak University, Dharwad, one of the oldest universities in Karnataka. He was also the vice-chancellor of the Kannada University, Hampi, Ballari (Bellary) district. He had won several important awards, including those from Central Sahitya Academy, Karnataka Sahitya Academy, Pampa Award, Nadoja Award and Nrupathunga Award.

He had authored over 100 books in Kannada and was a natural orator too. He was considered an authority on Vachana literature (propagated by the 12th century philosopher and social reformer Basavanna). In fact, Basavanna was opposed to religion, religious practices and Brahminical rituals. Followers of Basavanna are called Lingayats in Karnataka and Dr. Kalburgi belonged to the same community. Of late, Dr. Kalburgi had developed a penchant for such subjects and they reflected in his public speeches, which led to anger among a section of society.

Last year, the police had filed a case against him for allegedly hurting the sentiments of Hindus after he criticized idol worship quoting a literary work of another celebrated writer and Jnanpith awardee late Dr. UR. Ananthamurthy. Not to be cowed down by such intimidations, Dr. Kalburgi continued his campaign against idol worship and Brahminical rituals.

His home in Dharwad town was targeted by miscreants, who pelted stones and bottles. In another instance, activists disturbed his public speech when he raised the issue of idol worship. For the last eight months, the police had deployed personnel outside his home and they also accompanied him wherever he went, as he faced threats because of his comments. The litterateur had never revealed in public whether he received any threats directly or indirectly.

Only 15 days ago, he requested the police to withdraw the special protection given to him. On Sunday morning, around 7:40 am, two youths knocked his door and his unsuspecting wife ushered them in. Introducing themselves as students of the professor, they entered his room and shot him twice in his forehead. Before Dr. Kalburgi’s wife could come to her senses, the youths had fled on their motorbike.

While the circumstances leading to his death suggest that some rabid elements could be behind the incident, the police have not issued any official statement because they do not have any clues as of now. That a litterateur has been targeted in Karnataka for his sharp criticism of idol worship is something that has bewildered the police. Dr. Kalburgi led a content life with all his children pursuing different professions. There was absolutely no family feuds or property disputes that can provide different motives to the murder.

The police have to start probing the case from the scratch. Another hurdle for the police is that there were no official complaints or incidents involving right wing activists against Dr. Kalburgi in the last six months. Establishing a motive for the murder will be a major challenge. The police have to rely on the description of the killers to be provided by Dr. Kalburgi’s wife, who is still in a shock. If the police do not get it right from the beginning, this case in all likelihood will remain an unsolved mystery!

The gruesome killing of Dr. Kalburgi has already sparked widespread protests across Karnataka with the police bringing the situation under control. Now, there are calls to observe bandh in North Karnataka district to condemn the killing.

Raigad cops admit lapses, car traced: All we know about the Sheena Bora murder so far

It has been three days since Indrani Mukerjea was arrested by the Mumbai Police on 25 August and since then the murder case of Sheena Bora has gotten murkier with each unravelling fact.

While television channels on the night of her arrest had flashed that Indrani was arrested for allegedly murdering her sister, by next morning things began to get more complicated when it was reported that Sheena was actually Indrani’s daughter and not her sister.

Indrani Mukerjea. Image courtesy: Mukerjea's Facebook pageIndrani Mukerjea. Image courtesy: Mukerjea's Facebook page

Indrani Mukerjea. Image courtesy: Mukerjea’s Facebook page

News has been rife with theories behind the murder even as Mumbai Police chose to remain strictly tight-lipped although its chief Rakesh Maria said that they had a clear idea about the motive.

Friends, relatives and acquaintances of the Mukerjea-Bora family have been hounded by reporters and each of them have given their own version of what they thought about the murder.

Here is a look at how the case, that is still top news across television channels and newspapers, has unfolded in the past few days.

DAY 5, SATURDAY, 29 AUGUST

Raigad police admit lapses

The sensational Sheena Bora murder mystery on Saturday produced a new twist with police admitting that no case of murder or accidental death was registered after her human remains were recovered in Pen taluk of Raigad three years ago, that raises questions.

For the first time, Raigad police virtually confessed to the casual way in which their personnel treated the case when a burnt body was located in their area on 23 May, 2012, a month after Sheena was believed to have been murdered.

“Neither a crime, nor a report of accidental death was registered when Raigad police sent the recovered skeletal remains to JJ hospital in 2012,” Raigad SP Suvez Haque told reporters in Alibaug, the Raigad district headquarters.

“I have been ordered to probe all the wrongs or lapses that were committed,” said Haque, who took over as Raigad SP earlier this year. (Read more here.)

Car in which Sheen was strangled traced

Now, television reports suggest that the police have said that the car in which Sheena Bora was murdered has been traced.

NDTV reports that Sheena was murdered inside a hired car.

Mikhail was in Mumbai during Sheena’s murder

A report by The Times of India says that Mikhail told the police that a few days before Sheena went missing, Indrani had called him to Mumbai when her husband Peter was abroad.

The reports quotes a senior police officer saying that Mikhail said that he had been called to discuss Sheena’s marriage where a sedative was slipped in his drink. The report says that he felt giddy after that and fled when Indrani left to bring Sheena. Mikhail’s statement to the police allegedly says that their mother planned to kill them both on the same day however he managed to escape. (Read more here.)

Villager helped police find burial spot

The Mumbai police team, probing the mysterious Sheena Bora murder, have a lot to thank Ganesh Dhene, a village official in Pen tehsil of Raigad district, for helping them locate the spot where Sheena was allegedly buried in 2012.

A team of police, forensic experts and villagers had exhumed skeletal remains on Friday after Dhene identified the exact spot where Sheena’s body was allegedly dumped in the forests there three years ago.

DAY 4, FRIDAY, 28 AUGUST

Sheena’s remains exhumed

The remains of Sheena Bora are being exhumed to find more clues that can help solve the murder case, if reports are to be believed.

According to The Times of India, “In an important breakthrough, the Mumbai Police on Friday morning dug the place where Sheena Bora’s body was dumped and recovered some bones, a skull and a suitcase. The police are at the spot and digging for more remains is still on in Pen in Maharashtra’s Raigad district.”

NDTV reported that JJ Hospital too gave the police 2012 reports on tests run on the last reamains of Sheena.

Rakesh Maria, meanwhile told the media that, “Sheena Bora’s skeletal remains were recovered today and will be sent for DNA test tomorrow.”

He also said that her passport had been recovered from Dehradun.

Sanjeev Khanna remanded in police custody

Sanjeev Khanna, the former husband of Indrani Mukherjea, was on Friday remanded in Mumbai Police custody till 31 August by the court of Bandra Metropolitan Magistrate.

Maria after interrogation said, “Khanna has admitted to his role in the murder.”

Khanna, dressed in an off-white shirt and khaki trousers, was produced in the court amid tight security with his face covered with a white cloth. The order was passed by the court on an application by the police seeking his custody. The police alleged in the court that Khanna had played an active role in the conspiracy and murder of Sheena, and he had to be taken to the spot where her body was disposed off.

PTI reported, Khanna was arrested under IPC sections 364 (kidnapping), 302 (murder), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence) and 120-B (conspiracy).

Mikhail Bora brought to Mumbai

Sheena Bora’s brother Mikhail, who arrived in Mumbai from Guwahati, on Friday said he will cooperate with police in the probe of his sister’s murder as more details of the murky case and cover-up bid are expected to emerge later in the day.

“I will extend full cooperation to Mumbai Police. I will get justice for her,” Mikhail, who arrived in Mumbai this afternoon, told a TV channel on board the flight. He said the Sheena murder case was not the only reason he was going to Mumbai.

“I have some other personal work in Mumbai as well,” said Mikhail who is likely to be quizzed by police in connection with the murder case. (Read more here)

Cops reveal details on how Indrani was questioned

Indrani Mukerjea was interrogated by Mumbai Police commissioner Rakesh Maria for over nine hours on Thursday. But the cops at the Khar police station were pretty flummoxed at the disposition of the ‘cold and calculated’ Indrani. “Indrani has proved to be a tough nut to crack even for a team of experienced interrogators as she has been skillfully answering the questions. She has been curt with her replies and this forced investigators to confront her with questions that emerged from the statement of Peter Mukerjea’s younger son, Rahul,” a police officer told The Hindustan Times.

According to The Hindustan Times, since the start of the probe, Indrani has maintained a cool composure reiterating that Sheena was her sister who had moved to the US. It was only after she saw her driver that Indrani relented and confessed that Sheena was her daughter from an earlier marriage.

Sources added that Indrani turned out to be quite a struggle even for seasoned interrogators. That’s when Maria personally arrived to take over the interrogation. Though the investigators are yet to reach definite conclusions on the motive of the murder, all angles including Indrani’s dislike of Sheena’s alleged relationship with Rahul and the financial aspect, are being probed.

“While being interrogated about her past relationships, Indrani broke down and spilled the beans. She told the police about her relationships with Siddharth Das and Sanjeev Khanna before marrying Peter Mukerjea. When questioned further, she told us about how her father forced himself on her during her childhood… she later said she gave birth to Sheena when she was 17. It was the result of her physical relationship with her father,” a police source told Ashwin Aghor of Catchnews. (Read more).

DAY 3, THURSDAY, 27 AUGUST

Have fair idea behind motive of murder, says Rakesh Maria

In a late night press conference Mumbai Police commissioner Rakesh Maria told the press that Indrani Mukerjea had gotten a third person to forge the signature of Sheena Bora in her resignation letter to the company she worked in and to her landlord.

Maria told the media, “With regard to Sheena Bora’s resignation letter, letter to landlord, we have traced the person who gave the signature of Sheena.”

Confirming all the theories about how Sheena was murdered Maria said, “Sheena Bora was killed by strangulation in a car. Then, the body was set on fire in a bag.”

However he refused to divulge much detail about the motive behind the murder. “We have a fair idea on the motive but we will only be able to comment after questioning the third accused. Investigation is going at a brisk pace.”

Sheena had told me she was Indrani’s daughter, says Peter Mukerjea

While Peter Mukerjea had earlier told television channels and the police that he was completely unaware that Sheena was Indrani’s daughter, he has now told Times Now that Sheena had told him that she was actually Indrani’s daughter and not sister.

He told Times Now, “Indrani said it was utter rubbish… Why would I not believe my wife?”

Mukerjea also told the news channel that “Indrani flatly refused that Sheena was her sister. Rahul had also told me the exact same thing, but I chose to believe my wife.” Mukerjea told Times Now that Indrani disapproved of Rahul’s relationship with Sheena and wanted them to break up. “Indrani felt that Sheena could get herself a better guy.”

Sheena’s grandfather speaks out

Upendra Kumar Bora, father of Indrani Mukherjea, too disputed his daughter’s claim that murdered Sheena Bora was his daughter.

“She is not my daughter. I am her grandfather,” 80-year-old Bora, whose name was said to have been given by Indrani as father in the birth certificate of Sheena (who was born in February, 1989) told PTI.

He named Sheena’s father as one Siddarth Das.

Asked if there was another person in Shillong who is believed to be the biological father of the murdered girl, Upen Bora told PTI “that needs to be explored”.

What Mikhail told the police

In Guwahati, Mumbai policemen questioned Mikhail Bora at his grandparents (Indrani’s parents) home in Ganeshpuri area.

While the investigators were tight-lipped, Mikhail said he could be the “next target” after his sister (Sheena) if he visited Mumbai for the murder probe.

“I do not know. I may be the next target of my mother. She is very powerful. She can do anything she wants,” he told the media.

“I can go to Mumbai only if the Assam government ensures that two nurses take care of my (ailing) grandparents. They are both in their 80s and suffer from dementia,” he said.

Mikhail reiterated that he had repeatedly asked Indrani about Sheena’s whereabouts but the former maintained she was in the US.

Sheena Bora and Indrani Mukerjea in file photos.Sheena Bora and Indrani Mukerjea in file photos.

Sheena Bora and Indrani Mukerjea in file photos.

The driver’s statement to the police

The driver Shyam Rai, whose statement led the police to Indrani allegedly in his statement said that the murder was pre-planned and that Sheena was strangled to death by Indrani and her first husband Sanjeev Khanna.

According to CNN-IBN, which has access to the statement by the driver, “Indrani went for a reccee on April 23, 2012 along with him in Gagode village near Khopli Pen road in Mumbai where she planned to dump Sheena’s body after killing her. Following this, she gave a call to her ex-husband Sanjeev Khanna.”

The report suggests that the next day she booked a room in Worli’s Hill Top hotel as Sanjeev arrived in Mumbai from Kolkata.

CNN-IBN reports that the driver told the police that on 24 April Indrani and Sanjeev picked up Sheena from National College near Linking Road and then strangled her to death and put her body in a bag.

“Later, the bag was allegedly set on fire at around 4 am on April 25. Sanjeev returned to Kolkata after disposing off Sheena’s body,” reports CNN-IBN.

Sanjeev Khanna questioned

The Mumbai Police on Thursday got a five-day transit remand for Sanjeev Khanna and he is going to be brought to Mumbai by Friday. According to television reports, Khanna has admitted that he was present in the car on the day of Sheena’s murder.

CNN-IBN reports, “Sanjeev Khanna reportedly told the police that he was inside the car in which Sheena was murdered, but did not confess to the killing. This was confirmed by public prosecutor Shorin Ghaushal.”

What the police asked Rahul Mukerjea

For a third time in less than 24 hours, Rahul was questioned about his long relationship with Sheena, his step-mother Indrani Mukherjea, why he didn’t pursue the “missing person” complaint filed after Sheena disappeared and other related aspects.

According to reports that Rahul told the police that after Sheena’s disappearance he did try to look for her and get in touch with her but he remained unsuccessful.

“I tried very hard to find out about her whereabouts but I had no luck,” Rahul told the police according to The Times of India. He also told the police that his parents told him she had gone to study abroad.

Later, Rahul was escorted to his two flats in Khar and Bandra where he and Sheena spent time together, a fact brought in the open by his step-father Peter Mukherjea, Indrani’s husband.

DAY 2, WEDNESDAY, 26 AUGUST

Sheena was Indrani’s daughter, not sister

While initial reports said that Sheena was Indrani’s sister, it turns out that she was her daughter. According to Times Now, Indrani confessed to the police that Sheena was her daughter. (Read more here)

According to The Telegraph, Indrani’s relatives too confirmed to the paper that Sheena was actually her daughter. The accused also has a son from a “relationship with a person who divided his time between Calcutta and Tripura”. Later, Indrani was married to a man who had businesses in Kolkata and Jamshedpur.

The Telegraph reports: “Sheena and her brother, who works in an airline now, were brought up by their maternal grandparents in Guwahati. The children eventually moved to Mumbai and Sheena did her graduation from St. Xavier’s College there. After Indrani married Peter, who made a name for himself at the helm of STAR India and during whose tenure the blockbuster Kaun Banega Crorepati was launched, Sheena moved in with the family. The family friend said Sheena, who was known as Indrani’s sister, became close to Peter’s son from an earlier marriage. It is not clear whether the alleged relationship played any role in Sheena’s death.”

Indrani’s son Mikhail speaks out

Meanwhile news channels also spoke to Mikhail Bora, Sheena’s brother who confirmed the fact that Indrani was their mother.

When asked whether Indrani and Sheena had any reason for conflict, he said,”Yes, many times.” However, he refused to specify what the arguments between the two were regarding. He told CNN-IBN that he didn’t believe that the murder had anything to do with property or money.

“I want her to reveal everything herself… After 31 September when I come to know that she has admitted everything. If she lies, I will give every evidence. I have all the evidence and photos. I will provide it to the media,” he said.

Speaking to Times Now, Bora said that his sister had been living with him and his grandparents in Guwahati for a long time and Indrani had been living in Mumbai. He said that Sheena had gone to Mumbai to study in St Xavier’s college after which she had been working in Mumbai.

“In 2012 she came here for a wedding of her friend. After that she has no contact,” he said. Mikhail said that he had always asked his mother where his elder sister was but had received vague answers. “She always replied she was abroad. She said she (Sheena) had got a job there,” he told the channel.

He said that he had stopped asking questions about Sheena since he was dependent on funds from Indrani to take care of his ailing grandparents and she had threatened to cut him off. (read more here)

What Indrani’s husband Peter Mukerjea said

Indrani’s husband Peter has now gone on to say that he was completely unaware of the whole ordeal and was in a ‘state of shock’.

Reacting to the revelations, Peter had said to CNN-IBN that he had no clue about this fact. He further said that Sheena and her son were introduced to him as Indrani as her siblings. He added that the revelations are shocking to him.

Peter claimed that Sheena had an affair with his younger son and that Indrani did not approve of their relationship. He said that he did not know about the conversations between Sheena and Indrani used to be in Assamese, and so he did not understand them.

“When she disappeared in 2012, I was told that she was studying in the US. I asked Indrani and she showed me pictures of Sheena at a Diwali function there,” Mukherjea said.

Admitting that he was completely stumped by the police action of nabbing Indrani Mukherjea, he said: “I am dumbstruck by this level of criminality…”

Theories behind the murder

Tehelka suggests that it may not have been Bora getting involved with her stepson which may have enraged Indrani enough to have Sheena killed.

It may have got to do with something bigger than that – and what’s bigger motive for murder than money? According to

Tehelka

, the Mukerjeas had siphoned a lot of money from INX media, a company they later stepped down from. To avoid suspicion, a lot of this money had been transferred to their relatives’ accounts. One of those accounts may have belonged to Sheena Bora, who later refused to return the money.

Tehelka reports: “Singapore based company Temasek invested in the the media company of the Mukherjea’s and after the global recession, Temasek got the media company audited. It was found out during this audit that Peter and Indrani had siphoned of huge sums of money from the company in the name of various family members, including Peter’s brother Gautam Mukherjea who brings out the magazine Planet Goa.”

How Sheena went missing

Sheena studied in St Xavier’s College in Mumbai, and according to her LinkedIn profile, was employed with Reliance ADAG when she disappeared in 2012. She was 24-years-old at the time.

A missing persons complaint had been filed in May 2012 at the Khar police station after Sheena, who lived in the suburb was untraceable.

According to an Indian Express report, around the same time the police had found partially burned remains of a woman’s body near a farm house in Lonavala.

DAY 1, TUESDAY, 25 AUGUST

Indrani Mukerjea detained

The wife of former Star India CEO Peter Mukerjea, Indrani was detained by police for her alleged role in Sheena’s murder. PTI reported that she was detained by suburban Khar police, DCP (Detection) Dhananjay Kulkarni said without elaborating.

The Sheena Bora murder mystery: Everything that has happened so far

It has been three days since Indrani Mukerjea was arrested by the Mumbai Police on 25 August and since then the murder case of Sheena Bora has gotten murkier with each unravelling fact.

While television channels on the night of her arrest had flashed that Indrani was arrested for allegedly murdering her sister, by next morning things began to get more complicated when it was reported that Sheena was actually Indrani’s daughter and not her sister.

Indrani Mukerjea. Image courtesy: Mukerjea's Facebook pageIndrani Mukerjea. Image courtesy: Mukerjea's Facebook page

Indrani Mukerjea. Image courtesy: Mukerjea’s Facebook page

News has been rife with theories behind the murder even as Mumbai Police chose to remain strictly tight-lipped although its chief Rakesh Maria said that they had a clear idea about the motive.

Friends, relatives and acquaintances of the Mukerjea-Bora family have been hounded by reporters and each of them have given their own version of what they thought about the murder.

And on day four, we know that Sheena’s remains have presumably been exhumed, her brother Mikhail has been brought to Mumbai for questioning and Indrani is being questioned at a secret location.

Here is a look at how the case, that is still top news across television channels and newspapers, has unfolded in the past few days.

DAY 4, FRIDAY, 28 AUGUST

Sheena’s remains exhumed

The remains of Sheena Bora are being exhumed to find more clues that can help solve the murder case, if reports are to be believed.

According to The Times of India, “In an important breakthrough, the Mumbai Police on Friday morning dug the place where Sheena Bora’s body was dumped and recovered some bones, a skull and a suitcase. The police are at the spot and digging for more remains is still on in Pen in Maharashtra’s Raigad district.”

NDTV reported that JJ Hospital too gave the police 2012 reports on tests run on the last reamains of Sheena.

Rakesh Maria, meanwhile told the media that, “Sheena Bora’s skeletal remains were recovered today and will be sent for DNA test tomorrow.”

He also said that her passport had been recovered from Dehradun.

Sanjeev Khanna remanded in police custody

Sanjeev Khanna, the former husband of Indrani Mukherjea, was on Friday remanded in Mumbai Police custody till 31 August by the court of Bandra Metropolitan Magistrate.

Maria after interrogation said, “Khanna has admitted to his role in the murder.”

Khanna, dressed in an off-white shirt and khaki trousers, was produced in the court amid tight security with his face covered with a white cloth. The order was passed by the court on an application by the police seeking his custody. The police alleged in the court that Khanna had played an active role in the conspiracy and murder of Sheena, and he had to be taken to the spot where her body was disposed off.

PTI reported, Khanna was arrested under IPC sections 364 (kidnapping), 302 (murder), 201 (causing disappearance of evidence) and 120-B (conspiracy).

Mikhail Bora brought to Mumbai

Sheena Bora’s brother Mikhail, who arrived in Mumbai from Guwahati, on Friday said he will cooperate with police in the probe of his sister’s murder as more details of the murky case and cover-up bid are expected to emerge later in the day.

“I will extend full cooperation to Mumbai Police. I will get justice for her,” Mikhail, who arrived in Mumbai this afternoon, told a TV channel on board the flight. He said the Sheena murder case was not the only reason he was going to Mumbai.

“I have some other personal work in Mumbai as well,” said Mikhail who is likely to be quizzed by police in connection with the murder case. (Read more here)

Cops reveal details on how Indrani was questioned

Indrani Mukerjea was interrogated by Mumbai Police commissioner Rakesh Maria for over nine hours on Thursday. But the cops at the Khar police station were pretty flummoxed at the disposition of the ‘cold and calculated’ Indrani. “Indrani has proved to be a tough nut to crack even for a team of experienced interrogators as she has been skillfully answering the questions. She has been curt with her replies and this forced investigators to confront her with questions that emerged from the statement of Peter Mukerjea’s younger son, Rahul,” a police officer told The Hindustan Times.

According to The Hindustan Times, since the start of the probe, Indrani has maintained a cool composure reiterating that Sheena was her sister who had moved to the US. It was only after she saw her driver that Indrani relented and confessed that Sheena was her daughter from an earlier marriage.

Sources added that Indrani turned out to be quite a struggle even for seasoned interrogators. That’s when Maria personally arrived to take over the interrogation. Though the investigators are yet to reach definite conclusions on the motive of the murder, all angles including Indrani’s dislike of Sheena’s alleged relationship with Rahul and the financial aspect, are being probed.

“While being interrogated about her past relationships, Indrani broke down and spilled the beans. She told the police about her relationships with Siddharth Das and Sanjeev Khanna before marrying Peter Mukerjea. When questioned further, she told us about how her father forced himself on her during her childhood… she later said she gave birth to Sheena when she was 17. It was the result of her physical relationship with her father,” a police source told Ashwin Aghor of Catchnews. (Read more).

DAY 3, THURSDAY, 27 AUGUST

Have fair idea behind motive of murder, says Rakesh Maria

In a late night press conference Mumbai Police commissioner Rakesh Maria told the press that Indrani Mukerjea had gotten a third person to forge the signature of Sheena Bora in her resignation letter to the company she worked in and to her landlord.

Maria told the media, “With regard to Sheena Bora’s resignation letter, letter to landlord, we have traced the person who gave the signature of Sheena.”

Confirming all the theories about how Sheena was murdered Maria said, “Sheena Bora was killed by strangulation in a car. Then, the body was set on fire in a bag.”

However he refused to divulge much detail about the motive behind the murder. “We have a fair idea on the motive but we will only be able to comment after questioning the third accused. Investigation is going at a brisk pace.”

Sheena had told me she was Indrani’s daughter, says Peter Mukerjea

While Peter Mukerjea had earlier told television channels and the police that he was completely unaware that Sheena was Indrani’s daughter, he has now told Times Now that Sheena had told him that she was actually Indrani’s daughter and not sister.

He told Times Now, “Indrani said it was utter rubbish… Why would I not believe my wife?”

Mukerjea also told the news channel that “Indrani flatly refused that Sheena was her sister. Rahul had also told me the exact same thing, but I chose to believe my wife.” Mukerjea told Times Now that Indrani disapproved of Rahul’s relationship with Sheena and wanted them to break up. “Indrani felt that Sheena could get herself a better guy.”

Sheena’s grandfather speaks out

Upendra Kumar Bora, father of Indrani Mukherjea, too disputed his daughter’s claim that murdered Sheena Bora was his daughter.

“She is not my daughter. I am her grandfather,” 80-year-old Bora, whose name was said to have been given by Indrani as father in the birth certificate of Sheena (who was born in February, 1989) told PTI.

He named Sheena’s father as one Siddarth Das.

Asked if there was another person in Shillong who is believed to be the biological father of the murdered girl, Upen Bora told PTI “that needs to be explored”.

What Mikhail told the police

In Guwahati, Mumbai policemen questioned Mikhail Bora at his grandparents (Indrani’s parents) home in Ganeshpuri area.

While the investigators were tight-lipped, Mikhail said he could be the “next target” after his sister (Sheena) if he visited Mumbai for the murder probe.

“I do not know. I may be the next target of my mother. She is very powerful. She can do anything she wants,” he told the media.

“I can go to Mumbai only if the Assam government ensures that two nurses take care of my (ailing) grandparents. They are both in their 80s and suffer from dementia,” he said.

Mikhail reiterated that he had repeatedly asked Indrani about Sheena’s whereabouts but the former maintained she was in the US.

Sheena Bora and Indrani Mukerjea in file photos.Sheena Bora and Indrani Mukerjea in file photos.

Sheena Bora and Indrani Mukerjea in file photos.

The driver’s statement to the police

The driver Shyam Rai, whose statement led the police to Indrani allegedly in his statement said that the murder was pre-planned and that Sheena was strangled to death by Indrani and her first husband Sanjeev Khanna.

According to CNN-IBN, which has access to the statement by the driver, “Indrani went for a reccee on April 23, 2012 along with him in Gagode village near Khopli Pen road in Mumbai where she planned to dump Sheena’s body after killing her. Following this, she gave a call to her ex-husband Sanjeev Khanna.”

The report suggests that the next day she booked a room in Worli’s Hill Top hotel as Sanjeev arrived in Mumbai from Kolkata.

CNN-IBN reports that the driver told the police that on 24 April Indrani and Sanjeev picked up Sheena from National College near Linking Road and then strangled her to death and put her body in a bag.

“Later, the bag was allegedly set on fire at around 4 am on April 25. Sanjeev returned to Kolkata after disposing off Sheena’s body,” reports CNN-IBN.

Sanjeev Khanna questioned

The Mumbai Police on Thursday got a five-day transit remand for Sanjeev Khanna and he is going to be brought to Mumbai by Friday. According to television reports, Khanna has admitted that he was present in the car on the day of Sheena’s murder.

CNN-IBN reports, “Sanjeev Khanna reportedly told the police that he was inside the car in which Sheena was murdered, but did not confess to the killing. This was confirmed by public prosecutor Shorin Ghaushal.”

What the police asked Rahul Mukerjea

For a third time in less than 24 hours, Rahul was questioned about his long relationship with Sheena, his step-mother Indrani Mukherjea, why he didn’t pursue the “missing person” complaint filed after Sheena disappeared and other related aspects.

According to reports that Rahul told the police that after Sheena’s disappearance he did try to look for her and get in touch with her but he remained unsuccessful.

“I tried very hard to find out about her whereabouts but I had no luck,” Rahul told the police according to The Times of India. He also told the police that his parents told him she had gone to study abroad.

Later, Rahul was escorted to his two flats in Khar and Bandra where he and Sheena spent time together, a fact brought in the open by his step-father Peter Mukherjea, Indrani’s husband.

DAY 2, WEDNESDAY, 26 AUGUST

Sheena was Indrani’s daughter, not sister

While initial reports said that Sheena was Indrani’s sister, it turns out that she was her daughter. According to Times Now, Indrani confessed to the police that Sheena was her daughter. (Read more here)

According to The Telegraph, Indrani’s relatives too confirmed to the paper that Sheena was actually her daughter. The accused also has a son from a “relationship with a person who divided his time between Calcutta and Tripura”. Later, Indrani was married to a man who had businesses in Kolkata and Jamshedpur.

The Telegraph reports: “Sheena and her brother, who works in an airline now, were brought up by their maternal grandparents in Guwahati. The children eventually moved to Mumbai and Sheena did her graduation from St. Xavier’s College there. After Indrani married Peter, who made a name for himself at the helm of STAR India and during whose tenure the blockbuster Kaun Banega Crorepati was launched, Sheena moved in with the family. The family friend said Sheena, who was known as Indrani’s sister, became close to Peter’s son from an earlier marriage. It is not clear whether the alleged relationship played any role in Sheena’s death.”

Indrani’s son Mikhail speaks out

Meanwhile news channels also spoke to Mikhail Bora, Sheena’s brother who confirmed the fact that Indrani was their mother.

When asked whether Indrani and Sheena had any reason for conflict, he said,”Yes, many times.” However, he refused to specify what the arguments between the two were regarding. He told CNN-IBN that he didn’t believe that the murder had anything to do with property or money.

“I want her to reveal everything herself… After 31 September when I come to know that she has admitted everything. If she lies, I will give every evidence. I have all the evidence and photos. I will provide it to the media,” he said.

Speaking to Times Now, Bora said that his sister had been living with him and his grandparents in Guwahati for a long time and Indrani had been living in Mumbai. He said that Sheena had gone to Mumbai to study in St Xavier’s college after which she had been working in Mumbai.

“In 2012 she came here for a wedding of her friend. After that she has no contact,” he said. Mikhail said that he had always asked his mother where his elder sister was but had received vague answers. “She always replied she was abroad. She said she (Sheena) had got a job there,” he told the channel.

He said that he had stopped asking questions about Sheena since he was dependent on funds from Indrani to take care of his ailing grandparents and she had threatened to cut him off. (read more here)

What Indrani’s husband Peter Mukerjea said

Indrani’s husband Peter has now gone on to say that he was completely unaware of the whole ordeal and was in a ‘state of shock’.

Reacting to the revelations, Peter had said to CNN-IBN that he had no clue about this fact. He further said that Sheena and her son were introduced to him as Indrani as her siblings. He added that the revelations are shocking to him.

Peter claimed that Sheena had an affair with his younger son and that Indrani did not approve of their relationship. He said that he did not know about the conversations between Sheena and Indrani used to be in Assamese, and so he did not understand them.

“When she disappeared in 2012, I was told that she was studying in the US. I asked Indrani and she showed me pictures of Sheena at a Diwali function there,” Mukherjea said.

Admitting that he was completely stumped by the police action of nabbing Indrani Mukherjea, he said: “I am dumbstruck by this level of criminality…”

Theories behind the murder

Tehelka suggests that it may not have been Bora getting involved with her stepson which may have enraged Indrani enough to have Sheena killed.

It may have got to do with something bigger than that – and what’s bigger motive for murder than money? According to

Tehelka

, the Mukerjeas had siphoned a lot of money from INX media, a company they later stepped down from. To avoid suspicion, a lot of this money had been transferred to their relatives’ accounts. One of those accounts may have belonged to Sheena Bora, who later refused to return the money.

Tehelka reports: “Singapore based company Temasek invested in the the media company of the Mukherjea’s and after the global recession, Temasek got the media company audited. It was found out during this audit that Peter and Indrani had siphoned of huge sums of money from the company in the name of various family members, including Peter’s brother Gautam Mukherjea who brings out the magazine Planet Goa.”

How Sheena went missing

Sheena studied in St Xavier’s College in Mumbai, and according to her LinkedIn profile, was employed with Reliance ADAG when she disappeared in 2012. She was 24-years-old at the time.

A missing persons complaint had been filed in May 2012 at the Khar police station after Sheena, who lived in the suburb was untraceable.

According to an Indian Express report, around the same time the police had found partially burned remains of a woman’s body near a farm house in Lonavala.

DAY 1, TUESDAY, 25 AUGUST

Indrani Mukerjea detained

The wife of former Star India CEO Peter Mukerjea, Indrani was detained by police for her alleged role in Sheena’s murder. PTI reported that she was detained by suburban Khar police, DCP (Detection) Dhananjay Kulkarni said without elaborating.

Sheena’s brother Mikhail in Mumbai, says will cooperate with probe

Mikhail had earlier told the media that he has evidence on the murder of Sheena. He also told reporters outside the house, where he lives with his maternal grandparents in Guwahati, that he feared he would be the next target.

Sheena Bora’s brother Mikhail, who arrived in Mumbai from Guwahati, on Wednesday said he will cooperate with police in the probe of his sister’s murder as more details of the murky case and cover-up bid are expected to emerge later in the day.Indrani’s previous husband Sanjeev Khanna, arrested in Kolkota in connection with the case, is also expected to be produced in a court here later in the day.”I will extend full cooperation to Mumbai Police. I will get justice for her,” Mikhail, who arrived here this afternoon, told a TV channel on board the flight.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He said the Sheena murder case was not the only reason he was going to Mumbai.”I have some other personal work in Mumbai as well,” said Mikhail who is likely to be quizzed by police in connection with the murder case.Mikhail had earlier told the media that he has evidence on the murder of Sheena. He also told reporters outside the house, where he lives with his maternal grandparents in Guwahati, that he feared he would be the next target.A Mumbai Police team had earlier visited the maternal home of Indrani in Guwahati and talked to Mikhail.Meanwhile, Sanjeev Khanna, the former husband of accused and Sheena’s mother Indrani Mukherjea, who is the wife of former STAR CEO Peter Mukherjea, is also likely to be produced before a Mumbai court today, police said.Mumbai Police Commissioner Rakesh Maria, after hours of grilling of Indrani, her driver Shyam Rai and step son Rahul Mukherjea at suburban Khar police station, said late last night that police have a ‘fair idea’ about the motive of the murder, but declined to elaborate saying the “third accused” (Sanjeev Khanna) was yet to be interrogated.”We have a fair idea of the motive of the murder. However, the third accused (Khanna) is yet to reach Mumbai and to be interrogated. Only then, we will be able to tell you about the motive,” Maria said.The Mumbai Police questioning Khanna told a Kolkata court that he was allegedly involved not only in the murder of Sheena Bora on April 24, 2012, but also with its planning.The submission made by Mumbai Police at the Alipore court claimed Indrani had told them how she had a recceed Raigad’s Pen area with her driver Shyam Rai on April 23 to “identify the exact spot where to dispose of the body.” Khanna has claimed that he had climbed into the SUV driven by Shyam along with Indrani, but had dozed off a few minutes later. He claimed that when he woke up he found Sheena dead near him.Alipore city court yesterday granted Mumbai Police Khanna’s five-day remand after rejecting his bail plea.

Sheena Bora murder: Full details of the twists and turns in the case

The motive of the murder still remains a mystery though Indrani’s son Mikhail claimed he knew the real reason but would not disclose it.
File Photo
Image Courtesy: Facebook
On a day of sensational twists and turns, a web of lies and intriguing relationships emerged in the Sheena Bora murder case in which a former husband of accused Indrani Mukherjea was arrested today as it came to light that the deceased was her daughter and not sister. The motive of the murder still remains a mystery though Indrani’s son Mikhail claimed he knew the real reason but would not disclose it. Police also claimed that former Star India CEO Peter Mukherjea’s wife Indrani was present at the site in Raigad district where Sheena was killed in 2012.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Taking the investigation beyond the state, Mumbai police arrested former husband of Indrani, Sanjeev Khanna, in connection with the case in Kolkata. Sheena is stated to be Indrani’s daughter from an earlier marriage with one Siddharth Das. Khanna, a resident of Hastings Road area in Kolkata, was arrested from his friend’s flat in Alipore for his alleged involvement in the murder, Kolkata Police Joint CP (Crime) Pallab Kanti Ghosh said.Mumbai Police Commissioner Rakesh Maria told reporters in Mumbai that the murder was by strangulation followed by burning of the body by petrol. The murder took place on 24 April 2012 and the body was found by Raigad police on May 23, he said. Maria also said that Khanna is an accused in the case.A shocked Peter Mukherjea said he had believed that the deceased was Indrani’s sister and not her daughter while Mikhail said Sheena was the daughter and not the sister of Indrani.”I have no doubt my mother Indrani killed my sister Sheena Bora,” he said, claiming to know the “exact reason” but would not reveal it until his mother confesses to it. His statement came amid reports that Sheena and Peter’s son Rahul through his earlier marriage had been dating each other and Indrani was opposed to it.Intriguing claims came to light that Indrani had introduced her daughter and son to people as sister and brother. After the murder, she is also said to have claimed that Sheena had gone to the US for higher studies. Indrani was arrested by Khar Police last night over her alleged role in the murder of Sheena in 2012. Peter said he would cooperate with investigators in the probe.”I have never experienced anything like this before. The news I am getting, the kind of crime that has been committed, I would have never expected. Whatever help, information, police need, I am happy to help them with that. I would be absolutely clear and straight with them and cooperate,” he said.”I don’t understand at all with regard to my wife…Sheena Bora is her sister, I believed all these years, and now I am being told that she was her daughter. Whom I thought was her brother, is now her son from an earlier marriage, which I was not aware of. I was aware of one marriage and not so many others. So, now there are number of things that are appearing to me which are completely new to me,” he said. A police officer, who is privy to the probe, told PTI on condition of anonymity that “The driver of Indrani has told police that it was Indrani who killed Sheena and was present at the murder spot.” He, however, said it was still not clear whether the plan was to kill Sheena, 24, in Raigad or any other place.According to Maria, on August 21, Khar police had arrested Indrani’s driver in connection with an Arms Act case, adding he confessed to the murder and was taken to the murder spot. Mumbai police also summoned Peter’s brother Gautam Mukerjea.After her arrest on Tuesday night, Indrani was produced before Bandra Metropolitan Magistrate court, which remanded her in police custody till August 31.Sheena was kidnapped from outside the National College in western suburbs. She came here from Assam in 1990s along with Indrani and completed BA Economics from St Xavier’s College. In 2011, she got a job with Reliance Mumbai Metro but suddenly stopped coming to duty, police said. In the same year, her Facebook account was deactivated.Police had unearthed remains of a decomposed body three years ago after villagers at Gagode in Pen tehsil complained of foul odour emanating from the area. Peter said he was unaware that Sheena went missing.”(Sheena’s disappearance) is something I am finding out now. I was told that Sheena has gone to the US. I am not on Facebook, but I was shown these pictures of Los Angeles or wherever she was. I didn’t have her contact number. My son had told me ‘see, something is not right’, but I said her parents may not be happy with it, so she might have moved to the US… that I told him… He (Peter’s son) didn’t talk to me then.”Speaking in Guwahati, Mikhail said he had not heard from his sister since February 2012 and whenever he inquired about her with his mother she used to say Sheena was in the US.”There was no contact till 2015. Till yesterday, I did not have any clue… where she was. There was no contact. Till last September, she, Indrani Mukerjea, came here. Then also I asked her… where is my sister… And only yesterday I came to know, from news channels that she has passed away… murder case…” Mikhail said Sheena had gone to Mumbai alone since she was doing a job there.On a question about Indrani claiming that Sheena was her sister, he said, “I have nothing to state. Because a son to a mother, a daughter to a mother, it can be biologically proved. I don’t have to say anything about that. Because she is my mom, after all. And she has given me birth. I don’t have to prove that. A DNA report can easily prove that.”On the arrest of his mother and subsequent turns in the case, he said, “I want justice, that’s it. Because she is my elder sister. And I know some girl can’t be murdered like that. Without any reason…”Asked if he was aware of tussle between her and Indrani, he said, “Many times actually… since a long time actually…But I don’t want to say anything clearly right now because I want to see the reaction of the police, how they react and what is the outcome… She is in custody. After that, what report comes, I will decide what to do, the next step, what I have to do.”

Indrani Mukherjea, wife of former Star TV CEO, arrested on charges of murdering sister

More than three years after Mumbai resident Sheena Bora went missing, her sister Indrani Mukherjea, who happens to be the wife of former Star TV CEO Peter Mukherjea, has been arrested by the city police.

Image courtesy: FacebookImage courtesy: Facebook

Image courtesy: Facebook

Her chauffeur, 43-year-old Shyam Rai, too has been placed under custody.

A missing persons complaint had been filed in May 2012 at the Khar police station after Sheena, who lived in the suburb was untraceable.

According to an Indian Express report reports, around the same time the police had found partially burned remains of a woman’s body near a farm house in Lonavala.

Indrani’s role in the murder came to light after the police arrested the driver in a matter involving an unidentified pistol.

According to reports, the driver confessed to having killed Sheena and having dumped the body. He also reportedly claimed he had been told to commit the murder by Indrani.

He then took the police to a location in Lonavala where he was said to have dumped the body. The police discovered partial skeletal remains dumped there, according to the Indian Express report.

The police suspect that the murder may have the result of a financial or property dispute.

The Times of India reports that an FIR has now been lodged under sections of murder, kidnapping and destroying of evidence.

Indrani was later produced before a magistrate’s court which remanded to police custody till 31 August , a Hindustan Times report said. Her lawyers’ sought bail for her but it was rejected.

Peter Mukherjea has been quoted in the Hindustan Times report as saying that his family would provide co-operation to the police in their investigations, and that he hoped the issue would be resolved soon.

Indrani had married Peter Mukerjea in 2002, and they established 9X Media in 2007 with her as the CEO of the group. They exited the company in 2009.

Army has witnessed 11 incidents of fratricide since 2012, says govt

New Delhi: The army has witnessed 11 incidents of fratricide since 2012, while there was one in the air force, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said on Tuesday.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

The minister told the Rajya Sabha that the air force incident took place in 2014, while there was none in the navy.

Parrikar said the “possible causative factors for committing fratricide” were stress, personal problems and financial problems.

Asked about remedial measures, the minister said: “The government has taken several steps to spread awareness about psycho-social issues and to prevent incidents of fratricide.”

These included “psychological counselling by psychological counsellors, conduct of workshops on mental health, conduct of yoga and meditation as part of unit routine, establishing a grievance redressal mechanism, improvement in living and working conditions through provision of better infrastructure and facilities, additional family accommodation, facilities for movement of troops from border areas and liberalised leave policy”.

“These measures are taken within the existing resources and manpower of the armed forces,” he said.

IANS

Man held in Delhi for raping, killing 15 children since 2008

New Delhi: In a replay of the chilling Nithari killings, a man has been arrested from south Delhi for sexually assaulting and killing at least 15 children since 2008, police said on Sunday. His latest victim was a six-year-old girl a few days back.

The 24-year-old man, Ravinder Kumar, was arrested on 16 July for raping and murdering the six-year-old girl in Begumpur area of south Delhi.

“On 14 July, we received a missing complaint about the minor girl in Begumpur, and arrested Ravinder Kumar after investigation on July 16,” Deputy Commissioner of Police Vikramjeet Singh said at a press conference.

“During interrogation, he confessed to the crime and also revealed that he sexually assaulted and killed at least 14 other children since 2008,” the official said.

Representational image. AFPRepresentational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

Ravinder Kumar, who hails from Kasganj district of Uttar Pradesh, lived in Karala village in Delhi.

“Ravinder seems to be a person with a perverted mindset. At the time of arrest, his mental condition was normal. If needed, we will opt for a brain mapping test along with his psychological profiling,” the DCP said.

The official said police were able to establish Ravinder Kumar’s involvement in seven such cases. The victims were mostly from Delhi’s outer areas like Begumpur, Kanjhawala, Samaypur Badli, Mundka and Vijay Vihar.

“This brings back memories of the Nithari murders of 2005 and 2006 in Noida, where many young girls reported missing were murdered by Surinder Koli,” the police official said.

During interrogation, Ravinder Kumar told police that he would lure children, both boys and girls, with toffees or money, take them to isolated spots and rape them before murdering. He then dumped the bodies in drains or buried them in fields.

The DCP said that on 14 July, a complaint was lodged at Begumpur police station of a minor girl missing.

During a search, the girl’s body was found in an abandoned house.

Police also found a driving licence issued in the name of a man named Sunny, who at that time was being interrogated in another case in Kanjhawala police station.

Sunny revealed that he recently had a scuffle with Ravinder Kumar, who ran away with his motorbike and also snatched his driving licence.

“We launched a manhunt and nabbed Ravinder Kumar from Kanjhawala area. On being questioned, Ravinder confessed to having murdered many more children earlier,” the DCP said.

Last year, Ravinder Kumar was arrested for assaulting a minor boy in Begumpur. He abducted the boy near his house and then fled after slitting his throat.

He assumed the boy was dead, but he was saved as police found him bleeding in a septic tank of an under-construction building, the DCP said.

IANS

Family of six hacked to death for witchcraft in Odisha | Reuters

BHUBANESWAR (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – A couple and four of their children were hacked to death by a mob of villagers who accused them of practicing witchcraft and making their children sick, police in Odisha said on Monday.

The victims were asleep in their mud house in the hamlet of Lahanda in Keonjhar district, when a group of around five people armed with axes broke in.

The suspects, believed to be relatives of the family, accused the victims of being behind for a spate of frequent illnesses among infants in the village, said police.

District Superintendent of Police Kavita Jalan said two surviving children alerted authorities.

The police reached the village in the early hours of Monday to find the mutilated bodies in pools of blood, an axe abandoned inside the hut, and a young boy still alive.

“The eight-year-old boy was found by police gasping between the dead bodies,” Jalan told Thomson Reuters Foundation, adding that a search was being conducted to find the suspects, who had fled the village after the incident.

The practice of branding men and women as witches and assaulting or killing them remains common is some parts of India, particularly among tribal communities, despite there being a law against it.

There were 160 cases of murders linked to witch hunts in 2013, and 119 in 2012, data from the National Crime Records Bureau shows.

In a separate incident, police on Monday recovered the remains of a man who was beaten to death and burnt by a mob over allegations of sorcery in Rayagada district, also in Odisha state.

Charity workers say as well as trying to disabuse some tribes of superstitious beliefs, the government needs to focus on education and economic development.

India’s tribes make up more than 8 percent of its 1.2 billion population. Yet many live on the margins of society – inhabiting remote villages and eking out a living from farming, cattle rearing and collecting and selling forest produce.

Social indicators in these communities, including literacy, child malnutrition and maternal mortality, are among the lowest in the country. Neglect by the authorities and a Maoist insurgency in the country’s central tribal belt have further exacerbated their plight.

“People believe in superstition because they do not have health care. They are uneducated. Unless we provide them these basic facilities, the situation will not improve,” said Debendra Sutar, secretary of the Odisha Rationalist Society, a charity.

(Reporting by Jatindra Dash. Editing by Nita Bhalla and Leslie Gevirtz. Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women’s rights, trafficking, corruption and climate change. Visit www.trust.org)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Murder on Vyapam Express: Why this scam isn’t just about Madhya Pradesh

In the annals of Indian scandals, few will match the spectacular nature of Madhya Pradesh’s Vyapam, where anyone associated with it – from some of the accused to those assisting the law – have been dropping off like flies. The latest to drop dead unexpectedly are a TV reporter for India Today, a dean of a medical college in Jabalpur, and a trainee policewoman. The number of unexpected or unexplained deaths linked to Vyapam is now said to exceed 40.

Vyapam scam exposes the extent to which corruption is prevalent in our country.

Vyapam scam exposes the extent to which corruption is prevalent in our country.

Even if some of these deaths are finally explained as being due to natural causes (some surely will be so), the Shivraj Singh Chouhan ministry cannot remain untainted by it. The only way to escape this taint is by allowing outside agencies to investigate and deliver the final verdict on it. The state government should, therefore, accept that a Supreme Court-monitored SIT, or a court-supervised CBI inquiry, will be the only way to prove its non-complicity in these deaths, not to speak of the scam itself.

However, several conjectures and hypotheses surrounding the Vyapam whodunit (Vyapam is acronym for Madhya Pradesh Vyavsayik Pareeksha Mandal, the board that oversees entrance tests to engineering and medical colleges) are questionable.

Conjecture One is that the deaths are intended to shield one or two powerful people, including ministers and bureaucrats. This is entirely within the realm of possibility, but not probability. The sheer scale of the scam does not suggest that a central mind orchestrated it, or is now bumping off those who are a threat to it.

The core of the Vyapam scandal is that candidates (or their benefactors or guardians) could pay money to gain medical and engineering seats. This was facilitated by letting candidates copy at examination halls, by allowing impersonators to write the exam, or even by finding ways to award high marks even on blank answer sheets. This means hundreds of thousands of people were involved, from ministers to college invigilators to parents and students, not to speak of the middlemen who enabled it all. In one part of the scam, even computer analysts were involved; they apparently used their systems to allot roll numbers to fake students to specific exam centres. One whistleblower in the scam thinks only 5 percent of the truth has emerged so far.

The sheer number of arrests in the scam – over 2,000, according to one estimate – shows that all kinds of people at various levels were involved in it.

This means the scam did not necessarily need a central mind to plot the murders of those who may name the guilty in the course of investigations. Reason: many, many people were guilty, and many more than just a few powerful people had a motive to silence those who could compromise them. Is it a stretch to believe that they would not have done their bit to keep their names out? The sheer geographical spread of the deaths – covering many districts in Madhya Pradesh and even Uttar Pradesh, suggests that local murders could well have added to the ones planned by the key powerful people.

This is truly scary. It means many of the deaths may have been plotted opportunistically by those worried their names may come out in the probe, which is now being monitored by a SIT reporting to the Madhya Pradesh High Court.

Conjecture 2 is that this scam involves only one state, and one government. No doubt, the BJP government bears an inordinate share of the blame, for the bulk of the scam appears to have happened on its watch (from 2004 to now), but the chances are Vyapam was not a one-off involving only one state.

Remember the mass copying scandal in Bihar earlier this year, where parents and relatives were seen hanging out of windows helping their wards copy in an exam? What is the probability that this happened without official connivance? Nil. Copying on such a massive scale cannot happen without many people aiding it, since this happened in many places in Bihar.

If we only bother to look, there may be many Vyapams in many other states.

Conjecture 3 is that so many people cannot have died purely by accident and natural causes. They must have been murdered. This, too, makes obvious sense, but it is one thing to add up the numbers of all people dying in the scam, and quite another to actually link specific deaths as equivalent to murder. A quick analysis of the people who died (my analysis was done on this Wikipedia entry) shows that all the people who died in the early months of the scam – in 2009-2010 – were middlemen. This clearly suggests that those who knew a lot about it were possibly being bumped off.

But some time a bit later, students started dying – at least six or seven of them – and later even a parent or two. Now, these could well have been suicides or abetted suicides, since knowledge about the full dimensions of the scam would have been low with students or parents. At best, they would know the middlemen who helped them. And the middlemen were dying in large numbers after 2009-10.

In a country where we routinely report on students committing suicide for failing an exam, or even doing badly in it, it is not difficult to imagine Vyapam-linked students committing suicide to escape ignominy and protect their families from taint. This aspect clearly needs further scrutiny.

But Vyapam is a first in corruption-scarred India: it has brought to the fore in raw form the systemic and ethical rot that we have been countenancing in order to get our children ahead in life. Thousands of people have been shown to think nothing of gaining something for their children by paying money to the corrupt. It was carried out pretty openly, or else thousands could not have benefited.

In a sense, thus, the whole of society is tainted by Vyapam.

In Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express, detective Hercule Poirot, who had boarded the Express at Istanbul, was accosted by a man who claimed his life was in danger, and sought Poirot’s protection. Poirot declined, as he didn’t like the man’s face. The next day the man was found murdered in his compartment. There were only two possibilities: someone unknown had got on to the train midway, bumped off the man, and escaped. But Poirot found one intriguing possibility; everyone in the coach seemed to have a motive to murder the man, who apparently went unpunished for an earlier crime in which he had kidnapped and killed a three-year old heiress. To cut a long story short, Poirot finally explains the murder as one in which all 13 people in the Orient Express coach were complicit in the murder.

The Vyapam scam and the related unexplained deaths have all the hallmarks of multiple people having a vested interest in eliminating those with access to inconvenient facts, whether as an accused, or as someone aiding the investigations.

We should call it Murder on the Vyapam Express, where thousands of people stilled their consciences to promote their kids by fair means or foul. People are dying because we want our children to gain any which way they can, ethics be blowed. Vyapam indicts us all.

Jammu: Five policemen arrested for allegedly killing a youth

Jammu: Five policemen of Special Operation Group (SOG) have been arrested for allegedly killing a youth on the outskirts of the district in Jammu.

Representational image. AP

Representational image. AP

“Five cops of SOG have been arrested and a case of murder has been registered in connection with the death of a youth in firing in Domana belt of Jammu city yesterday,” a senior police officer said on Monday.

Police fired on a youth identified as Tarseem Lal, involved in narcotics smuggling, when he tried to escape after his arrest in Domana belt resulting in his death, he said.

A case of murder was registered against the cops after Forest Minister and MLA of Domana Bali Bhagat visited the youth’s family and promised them registration of a murder case against the accused policemen.

Bali spoke to Jammu and Kashmir DGP K Rajendra after which a case of murder was registered against the 5 policemen.

PTI

Journalist murder case: Will look into every minute detail, says MP Police

The Madhya Pradesh Police on Monday said they would look into minute details and scrutinise every angle in the murder case of the journalist who was burnt alive in Wardha district of Maharashtra.

DC Sagar(IG, Balaghat) addressing media on journalist murder case.

The Madhya Pradesh Police on Monday said they would look into minute details and scrutinise every angle in the murder case of the journalist. “Case is being looked from every angle. There are chances of old rivalry or an issue related to land. We will look into minute details and these nodes of investigation will be taken into consideration. As facts will come forward, investigation will be given direction,” said Inspector General of Balaghat DC Sagar .Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Rameshwar Sharma said that the Madhya Pradesh Government is very cautious about the safety of its people and that the culprits in the murder case of the journalist who was burnt alive, will be severely dealt with. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>“Whether a journalist or not, the Madhya Pradesh Government is very cautious about the safety of its people. Irrespective of the background of the culprits, they’ll be severely dealt with,” said Sharma. On Sunday, a journalist hailing from Balaghat district of Madhya Pradesh was allegedly kidnapped and burnt alive in Wardha district of Maharashtra. According to reports, he was allegedly murdered by three persons over a land deal. The police had arrested two people after conducting an investigation at the spot where the incident took place.

Modi running ‘one-man government’, his name refers to ‘Murder of Democratic India’: Congress

Presenting the “report card”, Ramesh told reporters in Bengaluru, “Chapter one refers to MODI – Murder Of Democratic India; …In the last one year he has completely bypassed Parliament, he rarely comes to Parliament, he was not present when constitution amendment bill on GST was voted in Lok Sabha.”

In a stinging counter offensive, Congress said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had no work on ground to show and accused him of “murdering democratic institutions” while running “a one-man government”.Presenting a five-chapter report card on the completion of one year of Modi government, Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said “MODI refers to Murder Of Democratic India” as it has bypassed Parliament with its “maximum governance becoming maximum arrogance and minimum government becoming one-man government”.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Calling Modi “Super Gagan Vihari”, Congress leaders also attacked the Prime Minister over his foreign visits saying he was only busy polishing his global image.The opposition party accused Modi government of playing with national security, saying “reducing defence expenditure, frequent ceasefire violations, Pakistani and Chinese infiltration into Indian territory and no decision over one-rank one-pension scheme show its lack of concern”.Questioning the government’s move to buy 36 Rafale fighter jets from France in fly-away condition, Congress leader and former Defence Minister A K Antony wondered whether the Finance Ministry and Defence Acquisition Council were taken on board on the deal.Presenting the “report card”, Ramesh told reporters in Bengaluru, “Chapter one refers to MODI – Murder Of Democratic India; …In the last one year he has completely bypassed Parliament, he rarely comes to Parliament, he was not present when constitution amendment bill on GST was voted in Lok Sabha.”In the last one year, of the 53 bills presented in Parliament, only five had gone to the standing committee, when normally all bills go to it, he said.Ramesh described the five chapters of the report card as “murder” of democratic institutions, maximum governance becoming maximum arrogance and minimum government becoming one man government, turnaround becoming U-turns some positive some negative, repackaging of UPA programmes and sharp reduction in allocation for social sector schemes like health, drinking, water and sanitation.”This, in short, is what Mr Modi has accomplished in the last one year,” he said.With Finance Minister Arun Jaitley launching a media blitzover the achievements of the Modi government on its first anniversary, Congress leader Kapil Sibal alleged that he was indulging in “big talk” and was unaware of ground realities.”Badi badi baatein karte hain Jaitley sahab…He says they have controlled inflation. I would like to ask Jaitley: Have you been near the first floor of the North Block? Have you been to the market? What will a person who sits in North Block know about market,” the former Union minister said in Mumbai.

Shirdi: Dalit youth murdered as phone had an Ambedkar ringtone

A Dalit youth was brutally assaulted and killed in Shirdi, Maharashtra allegedly over his mobile ringtone of a song on Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar, reports The Hindu.

Representational image. AFPRepresentational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

The eight youths involved in the murder got into a fight with Sagar Shejwal, a student, in a beer shop when his phone rang and the ringtone was set to a Bhimrao Ambedkar’s song.

They took him to an unknown location where he was assaulted. Later, the assailants drove their bikes over his body multiple times. Shejwal scummed to his injuries on the spot.

His body was later discovered by a family member who says the police was uncooperative and refused to take their complains seriously when Shejwal went missing.

Four of the assailants were arrested. Two others were later arrested in Goa, reports the Times of India.

Delhi Police registers Sunanda Pushkar’s death as murder, does not rule out questioning Shashi Tharoor

File photo

In a sensational twist to the death of Shashi Tharoor’s wife Sunanda Pushkar, Delhi Police today registered a murder case on the basis of a medical report that concluded her death was unnatural and due to poisoning but nobody has been named as a suspect as yet.Disclosing this, Delhi Police Commissioner BS Bassi did not rule out questioning Tharoor, now a Congress MP and a former Union Minister.It was not clear whether she had consumed the poison on her own or it was administered forcefully or by injection, he said.”Stunned” by the Delhi Police action, Tharoor, who had married Sunanda in 2010, sought full details from the investigators on the basis of which the police action came.”I am stunned to hear that the Delhi Police have filed a case of murder against unknown persons in the demise of my late wife Sunanda. Needless to say I am anxious to see this case is investigated thoroughly and continue to assure the police of my full co-operation,” Tharoor said in a statement.While Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said registration of a case one year after the death raises question marks and suspicions. “It is a legal process. Every case need not be sensationalised,” he said.BJP spokesman GVL Narasimha Rao said the registration of a murder case has ended the confusion and hoped that the investigation will be concluded soon and the guilty prosecuted.Nearly a year after 51-year-old Sunanda was found dead in a luxury hotel here on January 17, Delhi Police filed the case of murder under section 302 of the IPC but no one has been named in the FIR. “Nobody has been named in the case,” Bassi told reporters in reply to questions.Sunanda’s death had created a sensation as it came hot on the heels of a bitter spat between the couple on Twitter over his alleged affair with Pakistani journalist Mehr Tarar. “On 29th December, the medical board of AIIMS has given us a report. The main thing they have informed us is that the death is unnatural and not natural. Secondly, it is due to poison that could have been taken orally or injected and they have told us other things as well,” Bassi said.He said since tests to find out the quantum and nature of the poison cannot take place in India, the police have decided to send samples abroad for examination. “So it was necessary that a case be registered. We have registered a case and we will investigate,” he said in reply to questions. Asked whether Tharoor would be questioned in the light of the latest development, Bassi said, “Now as we have registered a case of murder, all those people who were connected with the case will be examined.””All the witnesses in this case were examined by the SDM, as he conducted inquest proceedings. So, all relevant witnesses were examined by him, we had also examined them under Section 174 of the Cr.PC.”Now as we have registered a case of murder, all those people connected with the case will be examined,” he said. Bassi said the AIIMS report has not specified the nature of the poison and how it was administered into her body. The substance is still not clear but the death is due to poisoning, he said.Asked why a case was being registered one year after the incident, he said the medical report which the police got initially was “interim”.The doctors needed certain information which was gathered and given to them, he said, noting after that they demanded some more information. “Now they (doctors) have given us some conclusions on the basis of available information. So on the basis of that report it was necessary to file a case and proceed further in the probe,” Bassi said.The report has not given definitive conclusion about how poison was present in the body but it has suggested more possibility of injection having been administered, he said.