Artist Chintan Upadhyay — accused in the murder of his estranged wife, artist Hema Upadhyay, and of her lawyer Harish Bhambhani — has approached the Bombay high court seeking bail. A bench of Justice NW Sambre is likely to take up his plea for hearing on Monday.
On November 17, a trial court rejected Chintan’s bail application for the second time since his arrest, observing that there existed “clinching prima facie and circumstantial evidence” proving his involvement in the murders. The court had also said that if let out on bail, Chintan was likely to “tamper with the prosecution’s evidence or influence witnesses.”
Chintan however, argued in his plea that there was “no legally-admissible evidence against him.” He added that he was “not present at the scene of crime” as he was in Delhi at the time. He said he returned to Mumbai “only after learning that Hema was missing.”
Hema and Bhambhani were murdered on December 11 last year. Their bodies were found in cardboard boxes that had been dumped into a ditch in Kandivli.
Chintan was arrested soon after on charges of masterminding the murders. The police have not been able to trace Vidyadhar Rajbhar, prime accused in the case.
Others arrested in the case include Shivkumar Rajbhar and Chintan’s house help, Pradeep Rajbhar.