Nurse’s killer surfaced as he had run out of money
Maninder Singh, 31, who on Tuesday confessed on live television to having killed Sarabjit Kaur, 27, at a hotel in Chandigarh, surfaced at the Punjabi news channel office two weeks after the crime as he had run out of money.
According to police, after killing Sarabjit, Maninder left the hotel in the Industrial Area, Phase 2, on December 30, with ₹30,000 in his pocket. He used this money to stay at different dharamshalas (inns) and gurdwaras across Punjab.
“Maninder decided to return to Chandigarh on Tuesday, as he had run out of money. He had no option, but to surrender. As he could not afford a lawyer, he chose to seek the a news channel’s help,” said an investigating official, who was not authorised to talk to media.
The accused had been staying at a dharamshala in Sangrur, a short distance from the bus stand, for two days.He took a bus to reach Zirakpur, and then travelled on foot till Baltana. From there, he took an auto-rickshaw to reach Ram Darbar, and again walked towards the news channel office in the Industrial Area, Phase 2. Maninder had only ₹500 with him when he was arrested, said the cop.
Maninder was produced in court on Wednesday and sent to five-day police custody. Police had sought his six-day remand, stating that they needed to recover the murder weapon, his clothes and keys of the hotel room.
Confessing in court, Maninder said, “Maithon galti ho gai (I have a committed a mistake).” While weeping, he also said his family has disowned him and he should be provided legal aid. The family lives in Sector 30.
During the TV interview, Maninder had said that he killed Sarabjit as he suspected her of having an affair.
The two had met through a matrimonial site in April 2019. However, Sarabjit’s family had refused to get them married, as “I was jobless and because of our caste”, he had said on TV.
As Sarabjit, who belonged to Sangrur, was working as a nurse at a private hospital, the couple kept meeting.
Police said Maninder, who had left his job as driver at a factory in the Industrial Area, was exploiting Sarabjit for money.
The Hyundai i20 car, which Maninder dumped in Patiala after committing the crime and was recovered by police a couple of days ago, was bought using the money Sarabjit gave him to plan their “runaway wedding” in September 2019, said police.
Investigating officials said Maninder had suggested to Sarabjit to lie to her parents that she could get a government job by bribing a person. “On September 27, 2019, she gave ₹6 lakh to Maninder, who bought a secondhand car in October. The remaining money was spent on shopping for the planned wedding,” said police.
According to police, Maninder has at least 10 different credit cards and used to them book hotel rooms and buying clothes. “He even took a bank loan of ₹2.32 lakh to pay off his pending credit card dues,” said police.