Man held for killing bar waitress in Dahisar over blackmailing

Mumbai: Dahisar police arrested Sopan Rohidas, 32, for killing a bar waitress, Rosina Shaikh, who was blackmailing him for money. The couple was having an affair and Shaikh kept demanding money for her silence. Moreover, Rohidas stole cash and jewellery from Shaikh's residence to mislead police by staging a theft and flew to his hometown. Interestingly, police cracked the case with the help of a batch number of the vodka bottle, from which the couple had consumed liquor.

Police said that Rohidas and Shaikh met at a bar where the deceased was employed as a waitress over four years ago. They soon exchanged numbers and started a casual relationship. Rohidas, a native of West Bengal, stayed with his wife and daughter at Rawalpada in Dahisar, and worked at a gold jewellery polishing unit, and often met Shaikh at her residence in Jankalyan Nagar on Saturdays. However, all was not well between them as Shaikh often blackmailed him to mint money in exchange to maintain her silence over the affair.

On December 29, when Shaikh's live-in partner was out for a work assignment in Hyderabad, Rohidas had visited her and had brought a bottle of vodka with him. After a few rounds of drinks, Shaikh and Rohidas got into a heated argument over her blackmailing and insulting tone, and strangulated her with a soft pillow, breaking her neck bone and killing her on the spot.

"Rohidas then took a bath, stole her cash and valuables worth Rs 3.30 lakh and locked the house from inside, using a key. He then booked an Air Vistara flight to West Bengal and fled from the city," said DS Swami, deputy commissioner of police (zone 12).

When Shaikh's maid reported to work the next day and the doorbells went unanswered, twice, she alerted the landlord, who opened the door, to find Shaikh lying dead in her bed. Dahisar Police reached the spot and conducted a panchnama, where they saw two glasses and bottle of 'Green Apple Vodka'. Meanwhile, police also checked the CCTV camera footage of the SRA building, and found a man entering the building in the wee hours. When police made enquiries, it was revealed that this man often visited Shaikh and the duo were friends.

Further investigation revealed that Rohidas stayed at Rawalpada and had gone to West Bengal for a while. Subsequently, police also checked with local wine shops with the help of a batch number on the bottle of Vodka, which led them to a CCTV camera footage of a shop, where Rohidas was seen purchasing the liquour. Police immediately searched his residence and recovered the stolen jewellery, missing from Shaikh's apartment, confirming his role in the murder.

Police teams were fanned out teams to nab Rohidas and a team was sent to West Bengal, where he was nabbed on Thursday. During interrogation, Rohidas revealed that Shaikh's insults and blackmail compelled him to silence her for good. "He also staged the robbery to mislead police and get away with murder. It seems the murder was committed in the spur of the moment. He was booked under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code for murder (section 302) and causing disappearance of evidence (section 201)," added DCP Swami.

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