Sonu Pal, the man who shot his cousin sisters just because they eloped with their boyfriends, seems unrepentant.
"To save the honour of my family, I shot them (my cousins) dead," Pal said without batting an eyelid. A moment later, he clarified, "Other family members have nothing to do with the murders."
Talking to reporters after he was arrested, Pal said: "My cousins (Pinki and Sonam) had eloped with some boys a few days ago. I had traced them to the Aligarh Railway Station and brought them back two days ago. Since then, we were not able to face the society and our neighbours have been taunting us."
The parents of the two girls had initially feigned ignorance about the identity of the killer.
According to a police investigator who requested anonymity, as he is not authorised to talk to media, the parents had not even intimated the police about their daughter's murder; it was a neighbour who alerted the police.
Senior Superintendent of Police R.K. Chaturvedi also said that initially the family had claimed they did not know who shot them. "But after detailed interrogation, they revealed the name of Sonu Pal. We have not been able to find out yet as with whom the girls had eloped."
Pinki was the daughter of Pal's uncle Gopi Chand, while Sonam was the daughter of Chand's brother Om Prakash.
"Gopi Chand, who runs a provision store, and his brother Om Prakash, who runs a medical store, live in the same colony. On Thursday morning, their daughters were found murdered at Gopi Chand's house. Initial investigations revealed it was an honour killing by the family," said Chaturvedi.
Both girls were shot at Om prakash's house but were later taken to a local doctor who declared them dead. "When the bodies were brought to Gopi Chand's house, somebody informed the police," Chaturvedi said, adding the bodies had bullet wounds on their chests.
Chand's tenant Alka Pandey said there was a commotion after which they all came out and saw the girls on the cot. "When I came out of the room, some people were shouting 'khoon ho gaya'. I saw the two girls on the cot, they were dead."
Requesting anonymity, another neighbour said the girls had fallen in love with their tenants who worked in factories. "They were living for the last one-and-half-years. A few days ago, both the girls eloped with them."