He insisted that she remain a housewife for life even if it meant that their household would be run on his meagre and erratic earnings. When she decided to change that for the sake of their three children, he smashed her head in a fit of rage.
Sanjay Kumar, 37, a small-time electrician and an alcoholic, had used a small gas cylinder to inflict a fatal head injury on his wife, 35-year-old Kanti Devi's head after a heated argument on the evening of June 10.
He was arrested from the Anand Vihar railway station on the basis of the testimony of one of his sons after a week of search in the slums of east Delhi, said Ajay Kumar, deputy commissioner of police (east).
"Kumar and Kanti had been separated for around a year since he disapproved of her working and doubted her character. They had come back to their rented house in Ghazipur just five days before he murdered her," said DCP Kumar.
"Ironically, and unfortunately, the family had come face-to-face as recently as May 29 at a marriage function in their parental village at Bihar where the family's elders had persuaded them to give living together another chance."
On June 9, the day of the incident, the police claimed, Kumar took his two sons -- aged between 7 and 10 years -- Tapas and Hritik to Ghaziabad's EDM Mall for an outing -- the same mall where their mother used to work as a security guard.
Since she couldn't join them, Kanti had returned home around nine pm for a seemingly uneventful family dinner. After the meal, the couple's children had gone to sleep on the roof, leaving their incensed father alone with their tired mother.
"A violent argument between the couple soon turned into a scuffle. He attacked her on the head and fled with her mobile phone after she lost consciousness and fell to the floor," DCP Kumar said.
"The incident was discovered, and reported, early on the morning of the next day by one of the sons. He told us that he was sure his father was behind his mother's murder" Kumar added.