Noida man uses selfie ruse to drown inebriated friend in canal

Police said the accused, Saurabh Singh, allegedly coaxed his “two friends” — who were drunk — to go to the middle of the canal for a “better selfie”. Police said Singh wanted to kill one of the victims, Nagendra Chauhan, as he had taken a loan of Rs 5 lakh from him and thought he wouldn’t have to return the money if he died.

noida Updated: Aug 25, 2018 07:37 IST
Vaibhav Jha
Vaibhav Jha
Hindustan Times, Noida
selfie,canal,murder
The accused, Saurabh Singh, planned to save the other victim — Bhanu Pratap — but was unable to do so, police said. (Sunil Ghosh/HT Photo)

Two months after the bodies of two persons were found from the upper Ganga canal in Muradnagar, Noida police on Friday arrested a 25-year-old man for the alleged murders and conspiracy.

Police said the arrested accused had allegedly coaxed his “two friends” — who were in an inebriated condition — to go to the middle of the canal to click a “better selfie”.

The man, Saurabh Singh, a resident of Kashyap Colony in Noida’s Sector 48, was arrested from near the City Centre Metro station by a team from Sector 24 police station on Friday morning. Police said the accused wanted to kill one of the victims, Nagendra Chauhan (38), as he had passed lewd remarks about his sister.

Singh also wanted to get rid of Chauhan since he had taken a loan of Rs 5 lakh from him and he had thought that he
wouldn’t have to return the money if he died. He had, however, planned to save the other victim — Bhanu Pratap (50) — but was unable to do so, police said.

On June 23, the day of the incident, Singh had ensured that he drank less alcohol while the other two drank more so that he could execute his plan and make it look like a tragic incident, police said. Police said they have registered a case under IPC sections 302 (murder) for Chauhan’s murder and 120a (criminal conspiracy) for Pratap’s death.

While Chauhan, a resident of Barola village, owned an electrical goods shop, Pratap was a contractor, police said, adding that Singh was unemployed. The three had become friends and had planned a road trip on the day of the incident, police said.

Rajeev Kumar Singh, circle officer 2, Noida police, said, “Singh intentionally drank less alcohol compared to the other two during the road trip to Muradnagar on June 23. The three entered the canal after getting drunk. Chauhan wanted to click a selfie with the other two standing on the canal but Singh insisted that they should go to the deeper end of the canal for a better selfie. Soon, Chauhan and Pratap started drowning while Singh called out for help. The divers at the spot rushed to rescue them.”

He added, “The divers first pulled out Chauhan and Singh as they were close to them. After that, they went looking for Pratap. Once they left, Singh told the crowd that had gathered at the spot that he would rush Chauhan to a nearby hospital and asked them to inform him when the divers find Pratap. He then put Chauhan in his car and drove towards Meerut Road that goes towards Ghaziabad. On a desolated stretch, he stopped his car, brought Chauhan out and hit him with a metallic object on his private parts and head. He then threw the body inside a drain.”

Singh maintained that the divers, meanwhile, rescued Pratap from the canal and took him to the nearest hospital, where doctors declared him brought dead. “Soon after, Singh took off from Muradnagar without informing the families of Chauhan and Pratap of the incident,” he said.

First Published: Aug 25, 2018 03:57 IST