2 held for murder of Mumbai woman at New Year’s Eve party

Published on Jan 03, 2021 12:03 AM IST
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By, Mumbai

Khar police arrested two people for the murder of 19-year-old Janhavi Kukreja on Saturday. The autopsy indicates Kukreja, who had attended a New Year’s Eve party with the accused, was beaten to death.

Shree Jodhankar, 24, and Diya Padankar, 19, were arrested and charged under section 302 for murder and 323 for assault, on Saturday. “We have arrested the two based on circumstantial evidence and statements of witnesses who attended the party,” said Gahanna Kaberle, senior inspector, Khar police station. Kaberle said the organiser of the party will also be booked.

According to the autopsy report, the victim was brutally beaten approximately around 2.30am and the body showed injury marks on her hip and thighs. “These injuries indicate that Kukreja was badly beaten with an intention of killing her,” said an officer from Khar police station. The autopsy lists skull fracture as the cause of death.

On Thursday, Kukreja, Jodhankar and Padankar were among 10 people who attended a New Year’s Eve terrace party at Bhagwati Heights in Khar. During the party, Kukreja, Jodhankar and Padankar got into a fight and the police suspect the fight may have been caused by Kukreja accusing Jodhankar of cheating on her with Padankar. An officer familiar with the investigation said the fight turned violent with Jodhankar and Padankar hitting Kukreja.

Khar police investigating the case said that at 2.30am, Janhvi left the rooftop after a heated argument with her alleged boyfriend and the girl he was making out with. However, after allegedly killing her, Jodhankar and Padankar returned to the party, which led the others attending the party to think that Janhvi had gone home.

It was not until 6am that the murder was discovered. Officers at the crime scene said that a woman from the building was walking her dog when she saw blood dripping from the staircase. “By this time, the party was still going on and the murder went unnoticed as people used the lift and not the stairs to go up and down the building,” said the officer.

When police reached the rooftop, they found alcohol bottles and people in the party inebriated. The organiser of the party then revealed that Jodhankar and Padankar fought with Kukreja.

Police are also probing whether drugs were being consumed at the party.

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Thursday, January 27, 2022