Aarushi murder case: Talwars’ outer door not locked from inside, murder suspicion again on outsiders
The Talwar’s lawyers were able to establish that the outermost door of their flat was not locked from inside and that outsiders could have entered and committed the double murder.Updated: Oct 13, 2017 19:58 IST
Dentists Rajesh and Nupur Talwar were acquitted in the murders of their daughter and domestic help after prosecution lawyers failed to prove that the outer door of the couple’s flat was locked from inside and outsiders could not have entered it.
On May 16, 2008, Aarushi was found murdered inside her bedroom in the Talwars’ flat in Noida’s posh Jal Vayu Vihar – her throat slit with surgical precision. The police initially suspected the missing house help from Nepal, Hemraj, but his decomposed body was found a day later on the terrace of the building.
During their appeal in the Allahabad high court, lawyers for the Talwars were able to demolish CBI’s star witness’ claims who suggested the outer door of the flat was locked from inside, ruling out any eventuality of outsiders entering the house and committing the gruesome murders.
Bharti Mandal, a 35-year-old domestic help, had started working at the Talwars’ residence only a week before the murders and two of her statements were recorded in June 2008. She was the first person to arrive at the Talwars’ flat on the morning of May 16.
She had stated that the outermost iron grille door did not open when she touched it.
“I have been called for the first time to give statement here. Whatever was taught/explained to me, the same statement I have stated here,” Bharti had told the trial court earlier.
Her statements about the position of the door were crucial for the CBI as the agency had made out its case on the theory that the inmates of the house – the Talwars - had committed murders and that no outsiders had entered the house.
In her earlier statements to the UP Police investigating officer on May 16, 2008, she had categorically stated that when she came inside the house the outer and inner iron mesh doors were open.
In her other statements on June 4, 2008 to the CBI’s investigating officer, she had not stated that when she reached the residence of the accused and put her hand on the door it did not open.
“However, after scanning the entire statement of PW10 Bharti Mandal recorded before the trial court we are constrained to observe that she in her entire statement has nowhere stated that the outer grille door was locked from inside or the same did not open, despite her trying to open it by pushing it (sic),” the court observed in the order.
The observation about Bharti’s statements suggest that the door was not locked from inside and there was a possibility of outsiders arriving at the flat and fleeing after committing murders, a theory maintained by the Talwars.
“We are also not satisfied that the prosecution could not have due knowledge of what had happened inside the flat on the fateful night in spite of due diligence as there was clinching evidence on record which pointed at the presence of outsiders in the flat of the Talwars in the intervening night of 15th/16th May, 2008 (sic),” the court order said.
During the initial investigation by the CBI against three earlier suspects and domestic helps, Krishna Thadarai, Raj Kumar and Vijay Mandal, the agency arrested them in 2008 and carried out intensive investigation about their alleged involvement in the crime. However, when the second team of the CBI filed their closure report, their involvement was ruled out.
In their closure report filed in December, 2010, the CBI maintained that there was no evidence against three domestic helps except the narco-analysis test which was not reliable.
“In case there is some legal complication arising out of the Allahabad high court order for my clients (Raj Kumar, Krishna and Vijay Mandal), we will take up the legal recourse. Krishna has not been able to recover from the fallout of his arrests and case made by the CBI earlier against them,” said Naresh Kumar Yadav, the lawyer who represented the three initial suspects.
“Vijay Mandal is back at his native place in Bihar. Talwars are free now but it is a big question, if not they, who else committed murders? We will also be moving to court for justice to Hemraj whose family is in bad condition in Nepal,” he added.
When contacted, Raj Kumar said that he has already settled in Nepal and married.
“I am now running a small cosmetic business of my own. I don’t want to think about the case as we had to toil hard to prove our innocence. I have and will maintain that we were framed and never committed any crime,” he said.
The Talwars who were sentenced to life imprisonment by the trial court, were acquitted by the Allahabad high court on Thursday.
First Published: Oct 13, 2017 14:32 IST