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Mumbai: Eight months after a 31-year-old Powai woman went missing, two men, including her ex-husband were arrested by police for murder. Police said, Deepali Yadav, 31, who had been missing since July 2019 was killed by her ex-husband, Nisar Shaikh, 35.

He reportedly strangled her to death in a moving car and dumped her body in Thane, which later washed ashore in Madh. A primary probe has revealed that Shaikh killed Yadav because she had been blackmailing him to keep mum about their relationship and kept demanding money for partying.

Yadav, a call centre employee, had not returned home from work on July 20, 2019 and was officially reported missing by her parents on August 11 at Powai police station.

Police said Yadav lived with her family at Chaitanya Nagar in Powai and had been in a relationship with Shaikh, a labour contractor, for more than eight years.

Powai Police recorded statements of all the people close to Yadav, including Shaikh, who said that he had not been in touch with her for a while and did not know her whereabouts.

Police, however, were not convinced by Shaikh’s answers and called him for interrogation at least thrice in eight months. Subsequently, they also quizzed people close to Shaikh to know more about his relationship with Yadav, including his driver, Dhruvchandra alias Lallan Tiwari, 35.

During questioning, Tiwari cracked and confessed to Shaikh having killed Yadav in the car which Tiwari was driving.

Based on this information, police detained Tiwari and Shaikh, who after several denials, confessed to the crime, said Ankit Goyal, deputy commissioner of police (Zone 10).

Yadav and Shaikh were married between 2015 and 2018 but separated after irreconcilable differences. Last April, Shaikh remarried and this hurt Yadav and she started blackmailing him, claiming she would tell his wife’s family about their marriage.

A frightened Shaikh had since then, paid her huge sums of money, which Yadav blew up on booze and friends,” said Vinod Lad, an investigating officer.

On July 19, Shaikh called Yadav on the pretext of inviting her for a party and took her in a car being driven by Tiwari. When the car reached Aarey Road, Shaikh strangled Yadav with a rope and stuffed her body in a gunny bag, which he tossed out near Kharegaon Bridge in Thane, said DCP Goyal.

Since it was monsoon, the body is suspected to have been washed ashore Madh Jetty and an unidentified woman’s murder case was registered. Police were checking on unclaimed bodies in and around the city at the same time, and found that the one recovered in Malvani matched Yadav’s description.

Powai Police booked the duo under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code for murder (section 302) and causing disappearance of evidence (section 201), following which their custody was given to Malvani Police for further probe.

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Free Press Journal