Missing JNU student to ghostbuster’s death: 5 crimes that foxed Delhi in 2016
The annual Delhi crime data shows that heinous crimes such as robbery, rapes, murders, and snatching decreased in 2016. Compared to 2015 when there were 530 murders till December 11, only 490 murders were reported this year. Robbery cases, too, decreased by 30% at 4,538 compared to last year’s 7,141 cases.
But Delhi Police were in news throughout the year.
One of the first cases that made national headlines was their decision to file sedition charges against Jawaharlal Nehru students’ union president Kanhaiya Kumar and others for shouting anti-India slogans. After the police registered an FIR under archaic laws, it snowballed into a major controversy with the department coming under fire for handling of the case.
Though a case was registered, 11 months have passed but the police have not even filed a chargesheet.
HT looks at five cases that grabbed the headlines and remain unsolved till date:
The case: The mysterious disappearance of JNU student Najeeb Ahmed has been haunting Delhi Police for the past three months. Ahmed was last seen in the campus by his friends on the night of October 14 after he had a scuffle with members of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP). Following protests, a case of kidnapping was registered.
Investigation and status: The reward money has been increased thrice from ?1 lakh to ?10 lakh. A special investigative team was formed, and five JNU students were questioned but police are yet to make any headway. The case has also been transferred to the crime branch. Last week, crime branch officers visited JNU and used sniffer dogs and mounted police — cops on horses — to search for the missing student in the forested areas of the 1019.38-acre campus. Police have summoned Najeeb’s hostel mates for a lie detector test.
A mysterious crime scene in south Delhi
The case: A spot near the Siri Fort auditorium in Hauz Khas turned into one of the most unusual crime scenes on October 21. The body of a woman in her 20’s was found in the bushes in the area. Five steel plates, a bell smeared with red vermillion, a photograph of goddess Durga, and a sandalwood log was found next to her body. Her face was partially burnt.
Investigation and status: Police are probing if her death was a case of human sacrifice. The only clue police had was a tattoo on her right hand that said “Krishna Jyoti, I love you. Ajay, Vijay, Anu, I love you”. The investigating team scanned the reports of all women reported missing in Delhi and also put up posters of the woman. She has not been identified so far.
The case: On December 2, a body of a man in his 40s was found with his legs and nose chopped off in Sangam Vihar area in south-east Delhi. The body was wrapped in a blanket and the man was wearing only a vest and underpants. This was among the three mutilated bodies found over 10 days within a radius of 10km in south-east Delhi. Police have solved the other two cases in Munirka and Amar Colony, but this one remains unsolved.
Investigation and status: The special staff, a select unit of the police, was tasked with probing the case but it still has not found anything. The man has not even been identified. The south and south-east police teams were jointly investigating the three murders but could manage to solve only two cases. Police say they can proceed only if he is identified.
The case: Satya Bala Bansal, 58, and her daughter Neha, 28, were found hanging inside their house at Neelkanth Apartment on July 19, within days of her husband BK Bansal’s arrest by the CBI on corruption charges. Bansal was a former director-general in the ministry of corporate affairs. On September 27, Bansal, 59, and his son Yogesh, 28, were also found hanging in the same flat. The mother and daughter had left a suicide note blaming CBI officials for harassing the family during a raid on their house and BK Bansal’s arrest. The father-son duo, too, wrote a suicide note and mailed it to the then CBI chief and media houses accusing a senior CBI officer of harassing them.
Status and investigation: Police are yet to make any headway in the case. Two men were spotted delivering Bansal’s suicide note at a courier office in Laxmi Nagar but they too haven’t been identified. Police have not even filed an FIR in the case. While Delhi Police are yet to summon the CBI officers for questioning, the probe agency reportedly conducted an internal inquiry against the team that had arrested Bansal and allegedly been accused of harassing him. Police say the inquest proceeding report is yet to be received and an FIR will be filed based on it.
The case: Gaurav Tiwari, the founder of Indian Paranormal Society and one of India’s own ghost busters, was found dead in the bathroom of his flat in south west Delhi’s Dwarka on July 7. Police suspect he may have committed suicide but they have not found any motive so far.
His family alleged that he was murdered as there was no reason to take his own life. Some officers believe he may have committed suicide because he had told his family members that ‘negative forces’ were after his life. Tiwari, as the CEO of Indian Paranormal Society, investigated over 6,000 haunted spots, according to media reports.
Investigation and status: Police are yet to receive the forensic science laboratory in the case. The autopsy report did not show any signs of foul play. Once police receive the FSL report, it will be matched with the autopsy report. Police are working on different theories such as suicide due to marital discord and depression or hallucination. However, they are yet to submit a final report to the court.