The police on Friday arrested the Rukhsana Almekar, the woman who had carried out pest control at the residence of two siblings – Rameez and Rehab Choughule - who mysteriously passed away at their Versova home.
While the Versova police had initially claimed that no pest control exercise was performed, they registered a case after the siblings’ mother in her statement mentioned that pest control had been conducted at their house some time before the incident took place.
“Almekar was arrested for culpable homicide not amounting to murder,” said Pratap Digavkar, deputy commissioner of police (zone 9). Almekar has been sent to police custody till July 17. Digavkar said they have also registered a case against Almerkar’s helper Salim, who has not been arrested yet.
In their remand application, the police said that they wanted to interrogate Almekar about the safety precautions she had taken before starting the process, and the chemicals she had used. The police are checking if she had the valid licences to carry out pest control.
When asked why the police waited till Thursday to register a case, an officer requesting anonymity said, “The family was in a state of shock; it did not seem right to record their statement. Their mother gave her statement on Thursday, in which she mentioned the pest control.”
The police are waiting for a report from the Forensic Science Laboratory, where they have sent Rehab’s stomach wash and a powder they found at the flat.