Former INX Media co-founder Indrani Mukerjea had tried to put suspecting stepson Rahul off the trail after the murder of her 24-year-old daughter — and his fiancée — Sheena Bora in April 2012.
This has emerged from a telephonic exchange between Rahul and Indrani which the former saved on his BlackBerry and which is now being used as crucial evidence to solve the murder that has captivated the nation.
Rahul, son of Indrani’s third husband Peter Mukerjea, doubted his foster mother’s version that Sheena had “dumped” him and left for the US. He pestered his parents for an answer because it was impossible for Sheena to travel abroad as her passport was with him, unless she was travelling on forged documents.
“She is kind of really so smart and would had flown alone on a different name ... which is also possible I mean. One can get into the airport ... it is not very difficult. To get in you can get another visa on e-ticket,” Indrani told him during a phone conversation they had between April and May that year.
Indrani’s explanation, which now appears to be a charade, didn’t convince Rahul and he asked: “What are you trying to say?”
She tried to explain again. “You can change the name or your e-ticket, no. That’s what I am trying to say. If you are booked under someone’s name. Under a false name … Now if she does not come for some reason best known to her, why are you wasting our time?”
Sheena was allegedly strangled by Indrani, her ex-husband Sanjeev Khanna and driver Shyam Rai. The body was burnt and buried in a Raigad forest. Indrani maintained all along that Sheena had settled down in Los Angeles, until an anonymous caller informed Mumbai police this year about the gruesome murder.
When Rahul insisted why Sheena hasn’t contacted him, Indrani replied that it could be because he was “calling up everywhere” to know her whereabouts. “She is not going to be dead, may be … why would you think death would be reason? She caught her life and you somewhere then why would she be dead for no reason?” she asked.
She again tried to calm down Rahul: “Please don’t worry … She’s been talking to people. She’s gone to the airport.”
Investigators said Indrani had also sent Rahul an SMS from Sheena’s phone, ending their relationship. Although he gave up the search after the text message, he was not completely taken in by that. In one of his email exchanges to father Peter in May 2012, he wrote: “Then there are the dodgy texts I received on the 25th April, but no contact since. (and in the past Indrani has sent emails and texts from other peoples acct/phone).”