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Journalist murder: KJ Singh had told brother about suspicious man near house

Police have ruled out robbery as the reason behind the double murder, even as the motive remains unclear, said sources.

punjab Updated: Sep 24, 2017 23:05 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Mohali
KJ Singh murder,KJ Singh,Journalist murder
A police team at KJ Singh’s house in Phase 3B2, Mohali, on Saturday. Blood stains can be seen on the floor next to the door.(Ravi Kumar/HT)

Senior journalist KJ Singh, 63, who along with his mother, Gurcharan Kaur, 92, was found murdered at his house in the posh Phase 3B2 locality of Mohali on Saturday afternoon had seen a suspicious man possibly conducting recce of his house on Friday.

Sources in the police said KJ Singh had informed his elder brother BP Singh on phone on Friday that he had spotted a person with a frail structure moving around his house between 4pm and 6pm. At one point, the man reportedly tried to open the gate of his house as well.

Singh used to stay with his mother in a one-kanal corner house, adjacent to a park. Police have also found some footprints along the railing in the park.

KJ Singh had last spoken to BP Singh, who stays in Sector 41, Chandigarh, around 7pm, said their nephew Preet Inder. The senior journalist had also exchanged some WhatsApp messages with his friends till about 8pm.

The double murder first came to light at 1pm on Saturday when KJ Singh’s sister Yashpal Kaur reached his house along with her son Ajay Pal. They were there to give them lunch, said Alam Vijay Singh, deputy superintendent of police (city) Mohali.

The two found blood on the main door that was bolted from outside and the blood trail led to the rooms where the bodies were found.

Theft only a cover up?

Punjab Police have set up a special investigation team (SIT) under inspector general (crime) Shashi Prabha Dwivedi to probe the case.

Meanwhile, initial investigations suggest the attackers left the crime scene in the victim’s car.

But police have ruled out robbery as the reason behind the double murder, even as the motive remains unclear, said sources.

Besides KJ Singh’s green Ford Ikon car (PB 65 0164) that used to be parked outside his house, his mother’s and his mobile phones and an LCD television are also missing.

The senior journalist, who was freelancing for a Canadian magazine, had a studio with expensive recording equipment in the house. But nothing from the studio, including the laptop, is missing. Singh’s gold chain was also intact.

Police are scanning footage from two closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras installed a couple of houses away.

Police said KJ Singh was stabbed in the stomach and neck. One of the slippers that he was wearing was found near the main door where he was first stabbed in the stomach.

His body was found lying on his bed while his mother was found dead with her legs hanging out of the bed in the adjacent room. She was apparently strangulated.

Blood was found all over the floor in the room, indicating that Singh had struggled with the attackers. Even the furniture of the house was disturbed.

Maid came at 9am, but returned

KJ Singh’s domestic help Rekha used to come to the house in the morning.

“I came around 9am and rang the bell at the gate, but no one answered, so I returned,” Rekha told police. Rekha came back an hour later, but no one opened the door again.

Police said the victim’s family members, too, had been calling him, but he didn’t return the calls.

“The exact time of the death would be known after the postmortem,” said DSP Alam Vijay Singh

Caring son, ardent reader

KJ Singh, fondly referred to as Kuku by his family, never got married and was taking care of his bedridden mother dedicatedly. His sister Yashpal Kaur used to stay with them till about five months ago, before shifting to her son’s house. She still brought lunch for them.

Her son Ajay Pal said Singh used to cook breakfast and dinner for his mother and even slept in her room to assist her.

An ardent reader, he used to read a book before going to sleep. But to ensure his mother was not disturbed, he recently purchased a headlight. On Friday, he even received a parcel of an anti-slip mat for his mother.

Even the room in which his blood-soaked body was found had only his mother’s pictures. The room had a few cassettes stacked neatly, books and a few medicines lying on the table.

Ajay Pal said he had talked to his uncle on Friday noon.

“He wanted to eat chhole-bhature and we had brought it for him today,” he said.

KJ Singh told his brother about a suspicious man outside his house on Friday; police rule out robbery as motive, SIT formed

First Published: Sep 24, 2017 10:46 IST