Accused forgot phone at crime scene, then called the number repeatedly while cops were searching the flat for clues. A mobile phone left behind at the scene of the crime was instrumental in the police nabbing two accused in the robbery-cum-murder case involving a senior citizen at Bandra (W) on Tuesday.
Though deaf and mute, the two accused were well versed in text messaging. Wanting to contact a particular friend to hide the cash and valuables worth Rs 5.5 lakh they pilfered, but realising they had misplaced their mobile, they repeated got other friends to called the number, first from Bandra and later from Mumbra. The police, who by then were examining the crime scene, traced the calls and managed to arrest the two.
The accused, identified as Saif Hussain Bhavnagri, 28, a gym trainer who lives at Bandra, and his accomplice Parvez Wahid Khan, 30, the son of a doctor who lives at Mumbra, were both unemployed. Prime accused Saif was a friend of victim Nalini Chainani’s son who is studying in Australia, and was known to the family.
Despite being unemployed, the accused tended to live lavish lifestyles, spending extravagantly on women and in bars. To meet their expensive tastes, they decided to rob 58 year-old Nalini, who lived on the 10th floor of Madhuban society at Pali Naka in Bandra (W). Nalini was usually alone all day, after her husband Sunil, who works for Bharat Bijli in Vashi, left for work.
On Tuesday, Sunil was in touch with Nalini through BBM. However, after 5.30 pm, she stopped replying to his messages.
According to the police, Saif and Parvez allegedly entered the flat around 4 pm, drank some juice the victim offered them, and slit her throat before fleeing with their booty. When Sunil returned home around 8.30 pm, he found Nalini in a pool of blood and valuables from the house missing.
When the Bandra police reached the spot, they found three mobile phones, one of which did not belong to the family. They also found two juice glasses on a tray, indicating that the victim knew the accused. “There were no signs of forced entry,” said Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone 9) Cherring Dorje.
After committing the crime, the accused wanted to contact a friend to hide the booty, but realised they had misplaced their phone. They got other friends to repeatedly call the number, which enabled the police to locate the calls and arrested the two. The cops first nabbed Parvez from Chinmaiwada locality of Bandra (E), and he led them to Saif in Mumbra. Given their impairment, the police sought expert help to decipher their sign language and record their confessions.
The investigation officer revealed that the two confessed to planning to rob and kill Nalini to meet their expenses. “We produced the two accused in court, and they have been remanded in police custody till June 15. We have recovered the knife and some of the jewellery. Investigations are on,” Dorje said.(MM)