Delhi-Mehrauli Murder Case Updates: Amid calls from across the sections of society demanding capital punishment for Aaftab Amin Poonawala- who allegedly killed his live-in partner Shraddha Walkar and sawed her body into 35 pieces- the Delhi police is taking extra precautions to keep him safe.
To ensure his safety, cops are reportedly continuously changing Poonawala’s location and keeping him at different police stations and other locations in South Delhi. They are also taking extra safety measures when the murder accused is taken out on streets or in forests to assist the investigating team in the collection of evidence like Walkar’s dismembered body, the murder weapon, victim’s belongings among other things, Hindustan Times reported quoting police sources.
During the night, some policemen are being also deployed outside Poonawala’s lock-ups with directions to remain vigilant and keep a watch on his activities in custody, the report said.
According to the police, Poonawala allegedly strangled his live-in partner Walkar (27) on May 18 and sawed her body into 35 pieces which he kept in a 300-litre fridge for almost three weeks at his residence in South Delhi’s Mehrauli before dumping them across the city over several days past midnight. The saw was allegedly bought from a shop on the Mehrauli-Gurgaon Road, police sources said.
Here Are Key Developments In Shraddha Walker Murder Case:
- The Delhi Police investigating the gruesome killing of Shraddha Walkar searched for the murder weapon at a forest here using a metal detector on Saturday, but returned empty-handed after one-and-a-half-hours, sources said.
- Narco analysis on Aaftab Amin Poonawala, who is accused of killing his live-in partner Shraddha Walkar, will be conducted at Dr Baba Saheb Ambedkar Hospital here in Rohini here, most likely on Monday.
- In the latest development to the Shraddha Walkar murder case, the Delhi Police officials have taken possession of all the clothes from accused Aaftab Amin Poonawala’s house in South Delhi and they will be sent for forensic examination, sources said on Saturday. They however said the investigators have not recovered the clothes the two were wearing on May 18, the day the crime was executed.
- Residents of a housing society where Aaftab’s family had shifted last month have stated that they are unaware of their whereabouts. A building resident said they have not seen Aaftab Poonawala (28), arrested by Delhi police for allegedly killing his 27-year-old live-in partner Shraddha Walkar, since the family shifted to the Mira Road society from Vasai.
- A Delhi Police team on Saturday recorded the statements of two men in Maharashtra’s Palghar from whom 27-year-old Shraddha Walkar, had sought assistance after she was assaulted by the accused in 2020
- A colleague of the deceased Shraddha Walker comes forward to share some input about the assault. Karan worked with Walker in Mumbai till March 2021. His chats with Walkar about the assault are doing the rounds on social media. Talking to PTI in a Zoom interview, he says, “On normal days, Shraddha used to jump around in office, but on some days when she had fights with Aaftab, she isolated herself so that she does not have to lie. I cannot imagine Aftab going to this extent…".
• Police recover three more bones from the Mehrauli forest that could reportedly belong to the victim. In the third round to the forest area near Chhatarpur Enclave, police found bones like radius-ulna (bone between the wrist and elbow), patella (knee cap) and a femur (also called the thigh bone, which is the longest bone of the body), according to a report by India Today.
•In the latest development, cops on Saturday reportedly recovered “heavy and sharp" cutting tools from Poonawala’s flat. Police suspect these tools might have been used to chop off Shraddha’s body, according to a report by NDTV.
•The vital recovery from Aaftab’s Chhatarpur flat was made with his help as Poonawala has started revealing the truth after strict interrogation. Recovery of the weapon is seen as crucial for further investigation of the case.
•As per the report, police said that Aaftab while in his research found out that while dismembering a dead body, blood splatters can fall up to a few feet, so he kept a distance of several feet around the place where the corpse was sawed. He reportedly also removed all blood stains with that special kind of acid.
•The forensics team believes blood stains on Aaftab’s and Shraddha’s clothes that they wearing on the day of the murder would still be there. Search for both their clothes is on.
•Cops have also collected Walkar’s clothes from the rented house in Chattarpur she shared with Ameen Poonawalla, in an effort to find more clues to help in the ongoing probe into her brutal murder. The police claimed that the rented accommodation, the place of the offence, is being closely inspected by the crime team and forensic experts.
•A team of Delhi Police is in Maharashtra and recorded the statement of Walkar’s close friend Laxman Nadar, in her hometown of Vasai. It was Nadar who alerted Walkar’s father Vikas in September that his daughter’s phone had been switched off for two months, following which the father filed a missing person’s complaint at the Manikpur police station in Vasai.
•Cops will also record the statements of local police officials who had recorded the missing person complaint lodged by Walkar’s father and questioned Poonawala, who is now accused of murdering her. Both Walker and Poonawala used to live in Vasai earlier.
•Poonawala’s family members left their Vasai flat 15 days ago when the heinous murder came to light. Poonawala, yet to be arrested then, had visited Vasai to help his family with the shifting, the police official said. His relatives too would be questioned, the official added.
•Police got a big breakthrough in the Shraddha Walkar murder case. Sources privy to the investigation told CNN News18 that accused Poonawala was captured in CCTV trying to dispose of his live-in partner’s body parts. “Aaftab was caught throwing some pieces of the dead body on CCTV on October 18. On that day, Aaftab made three rounds to dispose of Shraddha’s head, torso and hands," sources said.
•There have been calls- both online and offline- and from some religious organisations, demanding capital punishment for Poonawala. People have taken out protest marches both in Delhi and Maharashtra asking police to take the strictest action against the accused. On Thursday, a group of lawyers created a ruckus created at the Saket court where Poonawala was going to be produced for extending his remand.
•As per sources, Delhi police have intelligence inputs that Poonawala may be attacked by a mob or some fringe groups as part of their communal propaganda. After receiving the intelligence, police personnel were added to the group that accompanied Poonawala and the investigating team during the search operation, and other legal procedures such as his medical check-ups in the government hospital.
•Police is likely to take Poonawala to Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, where the couple stayed for some time, to establish the sequence of events leading to her brutal murder. Walkar and Poonawala reportedly wanted a “break" from their fights and went to backpack across Himachal and Uttarakhand in April after leaving their homes in Mumbai.
•Delhi Police teams have been to Mumbai, Gurgaon, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand in connection with the investigation of the murder case. After leaving Mumbai, Walkar and Poonawala travelled to several locations which are being visited by police to ascertain whether something had happened on those trips to trigger the murder.
•The cops are trying to establish the hitherto missing motive for such a gruesome murder. One of the angle police is probing is that Walkar wanted to end her relationship with her live-in partner but wasn’t being allowed to do so. Her chat with friends indicates in this direction.
•Poonawala has also told cops that he was under the influence of drugs on the day of the murder. As per sources, Poonawala used to smoked cannabis and had done so on the day of the murder. Another motive for the murder could be that Walkar regularly upbraided him for cannabis consumption and perhaps she did the same on the day she was killed, sources said.
•Investigators privy to the probe said accused Poonawala’s phone will be sent for forensic examination to identify the people he was in touch with after killing Walkar and retrieve deleted data.
•The police have so far recovered bones. Prima facie, they resemble human bones, it said.
•As per police sources, Poonawala burnt Walkar’s face after allegedly murdering her and chopping the body into pieces to rule out the possibility of identification. They said the accused told police that he searched for information on how to conceal evidence on the internet. Earlier reports claimed Aaftab was also “inspired" by crime shows, especially Dexter.
•On Friday, a team probing the murder also visited the office of a private firm in Gurugram where Poonawala used to work. He was accompanying the police team, an official said.
•Following a search, the police were seen carrying a plastic bag containing items recovered from the bushes in the vicinity of the office. However, the officials did not reveal the contents of the bag. The accused worked at the firm after shifting from Mumbai with Walkar.
•Delhi police also released its first statement in the case yesterday and said blood samples of Shraddha’s father and brother have been collected for DNA matching with skeletal remains recovered till now.
•In a statement, police also said in view of the “deceptive nature" of responses provided by the accused, an application for conducting his narco-analysis test was made and it has been approved by the court.
•Police have been directed by a Delhi court to complete the narco analysis test of Aaftab Amin Poonawala within five days.
•CNN-News18 has learnt that Shraddha had consulted the Mumbai doctor — who was close to her call centre- about her depression as well as her live-in partner’s anger issues and violent streak, over the phone in February 2021 after she was referred by a social worker. Shraddha told him she feared “he (Aaftab) might harm her or himself or both of them”.
•While the doctor asked Shraddha to visit the hospital since a phone consultation or diagnosis would be difficult, she refused citing the Covid-19 threat. The doctor also said the hospital was then a designated Covid-19 facility and he had told Shraddha about the need for a psychiatric evaluation and psychological tests for the couple.
(With PTI Inputs)
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