Sanjeev Khanna, one of the main accused in the Sheena Bora murder case, has been remanded to judicial custody till September 21 and was sent to Arthur Road Jail on Tuesday.
His lawyer moved an application alleging that Khanna had been detained illegally by the Khar police as they could not produce him in court on Monday — the day his custody expired.
On Monday, the Khar police officers took him to Kolkata, which led to the recovery of substantial evidence. Khanna handed over three pairs of gumboots worn by all three accused when they went to Raigad to dispose Sheena’s body. The police also found Sheena’s earring in Khanna’s possession.
On April 24, 2012, Sheena was called to a spot near National College in Bandra by her mother and INX co-founder Indrani Mukerjea. Indrani, along with her ex-husband Khanna and former driver Shyamwar Rai, murdered Sheena and her body was dumped in a village in Raigad district.
Special public prosecutor Vaibhav Baghade had on Monday submitted before the court that they would produce Khanna before the magistrate court in Kolkata and bring him back on Tuesday. However, when Khanna was produced before the court in Kolkata, the court refused to hear the police and asked them to take Khanna back.
Khanna was brought back to the city late on Monday and produced in the Bandra magistrate court. The magistrate remanded him in judicial custody till September 21.
Khanna’s lawyer Shreyansh Mithare, in his application stated Khanna’s custody from Monday to Tuesday amounts to illegal detention and that he should be released without any condition. Mithare stated that the police failed to produce the accused before the court when his police custody ended and also failed to obtain transit remand from Kolkata.
Magistrate GR Taur called for a report from the Khar police station and is likely to hear the application on September 10.
Earlier, in a major breakthrough, the police claimed that the DNA tests conducted by Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) established that the skeletal remains found in Raigad in 2012 were of Sheena. The FSL report was sent to police on Monday.
FSL officials said that the DNA extracted from the skeletal remains matched with that of Indrani and Sheena’s brother Mikhail Bora. The DNA extracted from Sheena’s brother Mikhail’s blood samples also matched with that of Indrani.
“The 15 markers from Indrani’s DNA matched with corresponding markers from DNA extracted from the skeletal remains found in the forest, thereby giving a 100% match. It can be concluded that Indrani is the mother of the woman whose skeletal remains had been found,” said an FSL official. A paternity test, however, is yet to be conducted as the FSL said it has not yet received the blood samples of Siddartha Das, who is said to be Sheena’s father.
(With Agency inputs)