Police investigation into the murder of a 19-year-old youth at Dombivli, who was stabbed to death by five persons after he objected to a remark they passed at a girl he was walking with, have led them to a slightly different version of events that took place on Monday night.
The Manpada police had arrested Pankaj Pal, 18, along with four minors on Monday, after they stabbed Santosh Vichivara, who works as a manager at a granite shop in Mulund, killing him.
As per earlier accounts, it was believed that the accused, who were known to hang out at a vacant building near Navneet Nagar society in Dombivli (East) had teased the girl by asking her for her mobile phone number, something that enraged Vichivara.
However, the statement of the girl points to a different version — that the accused might have been taunting Vichivara asking for his mobile phone number.
Thane police commissioner KP Raghuvanshi said: “The girl said that as she had her earphones on, she did not know if the boys asked her for her phone number at all. Vichivara had told the girl to take down his new mobile number. At this point, we suspect, the accused taunted him by asking him to share his mobile number with them as well.”
When HT spoke to the girl, she confirmed the same. “He [Vichivara] did ask me to take down his new number.” The girl maintained that she did not hear what remark the accused had passed, as she was listening to music.
The police initially did not apply sections pertaining to harassment. The accused were booked on charges of murder, causing hurt and common intention.
Later in the day, however, after Pal had already been produced before the local court and granted custody till December 10, the police decided that a section related to harassment should be applied.
Raghuvanshi said, “We have written to the court seeking permission to add section 509 of the IPC that stands for word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman.”
The four minors, have been sent to the Dongri children’s home. The accused had also injured 50-year-old Jayantilal Gada, a resident of the same society who tried to help Vichivara.