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Army Major who allegedly killed fellow officer’s wife had ‘surrender’ plan

Army Major Handa told the Delhi Police that he had planned to surrender in the hope that the army would treat him as their ‘own’ and be milder towards him during questioning.

delhi Updated: Jun 26, 2018 10:36 IST
Karn Pratap Singh
Karn Pratap Singh
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Major Handa,surrender to Army,Meerut Cantonment
Army Major Nikhil Rai Handa being taken to Patiala Court after his arrest in relation with the alleged murder of a fellow army Major’s wife in New Delhi on Monday.(Vipin Kumar/HT Photo)

Indian Army Major Nikhil Rai Handa, arrested on Sunday for allegedly killing a fellow officer’s wife, fled to Meerut Cantonment in order to surrender before army officials and avoid arrest by the Delhi Police.

Police said that he had planned his surrender on the instructions of a Delhi-based lawyer, whose identity they refused to disclose.

Handa had reportedly met the lawyer along with his uncle and brother, almost five hours after allegedly killing Shailza Dwivedi by slitting her throat with a knife.

On Monday, Handa was produced before a Delhi court that sent him to police custody for four days. About the objective behind his surrender plan, a police officer associated with the probe said, that Handa told investigators that he planned it in the hope that the army would treat him as their ‘own’ and be milder towards him during questioning before handing him over to the police.

“This would have also helped him delay the police probe,” the police officer said.

In a bid to destroy evidences, Handa had also planned to dismantle his white Honda City car that he used in the alleged crime and sell off its parts in Meerut’s Soti Ganj automobile scrap market.

Handa had got the car washed at an automobile repair shop while driving towards Meerut on Saturday, said police. Police, however, said they have recovered the car and forensic experts found traces of Shailza’s blood from it.

Deputy commissioner of police (west) Vijay Kumar said Handa, on his lawyer’s instructions, had allegedly crushed Shailza’s mobile phone with a stone before throwing it in a garbage dump near his home in Delhi’s Saket.

“He also destroyed the SIM card by breaking it into pieces,” said Kumar.

Handa told police that he burnt his blood-soaked clothes and a towel and threw it in another garbage dump.

“We searched the other dump site but Handa’s clothes and towel could not be recovered. The sanitation workers confirmed that nothing was lifted from that spot in the last couple of days. This means that Handa is misleading us,” said the DCP.

According to the police, Handa told his family members that his car had met with an accident. However, investigators are not convinced with Handa’s ‘accident theory’. They said when a police team had visited Handa’s home on Saturday evening, the family members had claimed that they were unaware of his whereabouts.

“But the mobile phone locations of Handa’s uncle and brother confirmed that they were travelling together in south Delhi after the crime,” the officer added.

First Published: Jun 26, 2018 09:16 IST