A 62-year-old woman was found dead, her head smashed with a hammer, in Lajpat Nagar area in southeast Delhi on Sunday afternoon. Her house was ransacked and Rs 10 lakh cash was missing from the cupboard, police said.
This is the fifth incident of murder-cum-robbery of a senior citizen reported from the Capital in the last month.
The police said Vimla Rani Ahuja, who lived on the first floor, was alone at home at the time of the incident. Her husband and son, who own a business of leather bags, were at their showroom in Lajpat Nagar market. The incident came to the fore after her son returned home at 4pm and found Ahuja lying in a pool of blood in the kitchen.
“He came home to find the door ajar. When he went inside, he spotted a trail of blood leading to the kitchen. When he went inside, he found his mother dead on the kitchen floor, her head smashed mercilessly, possibly with a hammer. The almirah in the room was also found open and the cash and jewellery missing. He immediately raised an alarm and made to the police control room,” a senior police officer said.
“A case of robbery and murder has been registered in the matter,” deputy commissioner of police (southeast), MS Randhawa, said.
The investigators suspect the involvement of a former help behind the incident. “The entry to the house was friendly. It is clear the assailants knew Ahuja. They even knew where she kept the cash and jewellery. The assailants did not ransack the entire house and directly went to the almirah where she kept the valuables. Only her room and the kitchen area was found ransacked,” an investigator said.
“It seems the assailants came prepared to burgle the house with house-breaking equipment, including a hammer. There are resistance marks on her body, including arms and hands. The assailants first hit the hammer on her head thrice. After she bled to death, they dragged her body to the kitchen area,” he said.
Following the incident, a forensics team also visited the spot to find clues and fingerprints. During the investigation, the police accessed the CCTV footage from the entry-exit gate of the block that shows a man entering the gate around 2.45pm and leaving in ten minutes. Ahuja’s family members, however, claimed the incident was reported between 3.30pm and 4pm.
“We are examining the CCTV footage. We have not found any clue till now. We have made a list of domestic helps, drivers and other staff who had worked for Ahuja. We will ask them to join the probe,” a senior police officer said.