New Delhi: In a chilling recall of the Shraddha Walkar murder case, a woman and her son allegedly killed her husband, chopped his body into 10 pieces, and kept them in a fridge before dumping them across east Delhi, police said on Monday.
Anjan Das (45) was killed on May 30 by his wife Poonam (48) and stepson Deepak (25) who were arrested from east Delhi’s Pandav Nagar.
Some of his body parts were found stuffed inside a bag at the Ramlila Ground in east Delhi’s Kalyanpuri on June 5, police said.
Over the next few days, his legs, thighs, skull and a forearm were recovered following which a case was registered under sections 302 (murder) and 201 (causing disappearance of evidence and giving false information) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) at Pandav Nagar Police Station.
The victim has a wife and eight sons in Bihar, but he hid this fact from Poonam, police said, adding that a team will be sent there to collect DNA samples of Das’ kin to match the body parts.
The mother-son duo had killed Das over suspicion that he was eyeing his stepdaughter and stepson’s wife. They had disposed of the body parts at different places in east Delhi over a period of three to four days and buried the skull, they said.
The accused told police that they mixed sleeping pills in Das’ drink and after he fell unconscious, used a knife and a dagger to kill him. They then slit his throat and waited for the blood to drain out completely before chopping it into pieces.
Following the recovery of body parts in June, police analysed CCTV footage of the area and conducted door-to-door verification. The body was later identified as that of Das which led police to Poonam and Deepak.
Police became suspicious of the two after realising that they had not lodged a missing persons complaint for Das and when questioned, there were discrepancies in their statements.
Subsequently, they confessed to the killing, police said.
According to police, Poonam was married off when she was around 14 years old to one Sukhdev Tiwari who later deserted her and came to Delhi.
She too landed in the capital in search of her husband and met one Kallu with whom she entered into a live-in relationship, police said.
She then met Das and developed a liking for him. In 2016, Kallu passed away due to liver failure and she married Das the following year in 2017, police said.
When she got married to Das, she was not aware that he had a family in Bihar.
Das, who worked as a lift operator, had in the past sold off Poonam’s jewellery and sent the money to his family in Bihar, they added.
The duo had begun plotting the murder around March-April, police said, adding that the fridge used for storing Das’ body parts has been seized.
The case bears eerily similarities with the murder of 26-year-old Walkar in the national capital.
Walkar was allegedly killed after a confrontation with her 28-year-old live-in partner Aaftab Poonawala who then sawed her body into 35 pieces and kept them in a 300-litre fridge for almost three weeks at his residence in south Delhi’s Mehrauli before dumping them across the city.
The Delhi Police arrested Poonawala on November 12.