Beena Dedia may have been alive today if the Kala Chowky police beat marshal posted to patrol the location had indeed been there, said residents of the area where she was killed on Tuesday.
Beena (39) and her husband Jatin (41) had gone for a walk near the Wadia Baug area of Parsi Colony, Kala Chowky, at 5.30 am on Tuesday. They were stopped by two men on a motorcycle, who demanded at knife point that they part with their valuables.
Jatin gave them his wallet and gold chain but Beena refused to part with her earrings. The pillion rider slashed her neck and Jatin’s hands, and escaped.
Locals took the couple to Parel’s KEM Hospital, where Beena was declared dead.
Sudhakar Pandloskar (52), a civil engineer who was near the crime scene when it happened, said: “The beat marshal was sitting idle near a tea shop, about 500 yards from the spot, getting his bike washed. If he’d been alert and not wasted time at the tea stall, the lady would not have died.”
Police Inspector R. Kulkarni of Kala Chowky police station said: “The allegation is baseless.” Pandloskar said he was 200-250 meters from the crime scene when he heard Jatin shout for help. “The bikers were gone by the time we got there,” Pandloskar explained.
Locals added this is not the first crime in the area, saying at least 12-15 cases of chain snatching have been reported from the area in the last year or so. “We didn’t hear anything. Only about an hour later, when my maid told me about the murder, did we learn of it,” said a resident of Wadia Baugh building, beside which the killing
“The couple (victims) had often accompanied us during our morning walks. They began walking in this area only recently,” said Pushkar Lal, another local.