With no signs of forced entry, the police suspect that 73-year-old Nirmala Vora knew her attackers.
Vora was found with her throat slit in her one-room kitchen flat at Nemani Chawl on SV Road, Malad (West), on Sunday night. Valuable worth Rs3.3 lakh, including Rs. 30,000 cash and gold ornaments, were stolen, the Malad police said.
“We suspect that Vora knew the accused as not many things appeared scattered in the house. This is an indication that the accused knew where the valuables were kept,” said a police officer requesting anonymity.
According to the police, Vora’s daughter, Chetana, 52, runs a juice centre in a shopping mall in Malad.
Around 3.30pm, Balram Jaiswal, one of Chetana’s employees, arrived at Vora’s residence to pick up sugarcane sticks for the juice centre and left immediately. An hour later, a tempo arrived carrying some raw material arrived. The tempo driver and his three helpers offloaded the material, issued Vora a receipt and left around 5.40pm, the police said.
The police suspect the senior citizen was killed sometime between 5.40pm and 7pm. “Vora would have her dinner before sunset, which is a religious practice in Jainism. But on Sunday, she hadn’t eaten and the food was found in the kitchen,” said the officer.
The police are now checking the CCTV footage of a restaurant in the area to ascertain if the camera had caught the fleeing accused. They have also picked up a few persons, including Chetana’s employees, for questioning.
A canine squad brought to Vora’s house on Sunday night followed the accused’s scent till Inorbit Mall, Malad (West). The police are also checking the victim’s cellphone call records.
The police said they would even be questioning the family’s friends, acquaintances and frequent visitors to the house.
“We have registered a case of murder and are on the lookout for the accused,” said A Jadhav, senior inspector, Malad police station.