Nepean Sea Road Murder: Teen Killer Was Hired Only 24 Hours Earlier

Nepean Sea Road Murder: Teen Killer Was Hired Only 24 Hours Earlier

Kanhaiya Kumar Pandit, 19, was arrested at Bhusaval Junction in Jalgaon district on Wednesday while he was on his way to his village in Bihar.

Vishal SinghUpdated: Thursday, March 14, 2024, 09:32 PM IST
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Nepean Sea Road Murder: Teen Killer Was Hired Only 24 Hours Earlier | Representational Image

The teen suspect accused of murdering 63-year-old Jyoti Shah at her flat on Nepean Sea Road earlier this week had been hired as a house help only 24 hours earlier, according to police. Kanhaiya Kumar Pandit, 19, was arrested at Bhusaval Junction in Jalgaon district on Wednesday while he was on his way to his village in Bihar.

Details of case

Mukesh Shah, 67, who owns a jewellery shop in a five-star hotel in south Mumbai, had hired Pandit to do household work on Monday, but within 24 hours, the 19-year-old had strangled his wife, Jyoti, with the intention of robbery, Deputy Commissioner of Police Sanjay Latkar said.

Latkar said that at 6.50pm on Tuesday, Mukesh called the police and said that his wife was lying unconscious in the bedroom. The police reached their house and took Jyoti to a nearby hospital, where doctors declared her dead.

Mukesh and Jyoti lived in a 4-BHK flat on the 20th floor of Tahnee Heights on Nepean Sea Road. The flat has three CCTV cameras: one in the hall, one in the kitchen and one in the servant room.

Findings from the investigation

On Tuesday Mukesh called Jyoti for some work, but she not pick up her phone. Their daughter checked the live CCTV footage on her phone but found the hall, kitchen and servant room empty. The cook, who comes home in the evening, also did not receive a reply. Shah then called the neighbour and asked him to check whether Jyoti was at home. The neighbour rang the doorbell but the door did not open.

Mukesh then reached home and rang the doorbell. When there was no response he opened the door with a duplicate key and found Jyoti in an unconscious state in the bedroom.

The accused, Kanhaiya Kumar Pandit (19)

The accused, Kanhaiya Kumar Pandit (19) |

According to the police, CCTV footage shows Jyoti and Pandit in the kitchen at around 2pm. At one point Jyoti receives a courier and goes to the bedroom. Shortly after, Pandit enters the bedroom and stays there for a while. After coming out, he goes to the servant quarter and gathers his belongings. He then takes the lift to the ground floor.

The police said that Pandit walked to Kemps Corner and caught a taxi. By then the police had already sent a team to Lokmanya Tilak Terminus (LTT) to look for him. Pandit knew that the police would come to the station so he went to the nearby railway yard and spent Tuesday night in a train. The next morning he caught another train to Bihar.

When the train reached Igatpuri, the suspect called his father – who is employed as a security guard at a building near Tahnee Heights – from a co-passenger’s mobile phone. By then the police had already summoned the father. He received the call at the very moment that the police were questioning him.

Officials immediately tracked the phone and informed the local crime branch of Jalgaon Police, Government Railway Police (Bhusaval) and Railway Police Force. They also shared with them a photo of the accused.

The Jalgaon police, the GRP and RPF searched every compartment of the train on which the accused was travelling and detained him at Bhusaval Junction.

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