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Chapter 6 : Interaction With Police
Manohar Shinde’s family, along with their lawyer Sharma, went to the police station to find out about the progress of the Vijaya case, after the re-arrest of Habib Rehman the previous day. Some of their neighbours also accompanied them, including Vijaya’s friend Smita and her parents. Totally, there were about 20 people, who were at the police station to meet the inspector dealing with the case.
They found that there were several people from Habib Rehman’s side also, totalling nearly 30 persons consisting of Habib’s parents, relatives and their neighbours and friends, so that there was a big crowd in front of the police station at that time.
The inspector Naresh Kulkarni became upset by seeing such a large crowd and ordered all the people to remain outside the police station and allowed only Vijaya’s family members namely her parents and his brother along with their lawyer Sharma inside.
He also instructed a couple of constables to keep a watch on the others gathered there, and to prevent them from coming inside the station, unless called by him. He asked them to keep the people quiet and prevent them from making a nuisance of themselves by shouting slogans against the police and holding a demonstration.
The inspector and Vijaya’s family members began discussing the case. Lawyer Sharma asked him whether the police had traced Vijaya, to which the inspector replied in the negative.
The inspector asked her family members to tell him all about Vijaya’s movements, till the time of her disappearance - such as, where all she went, whom all she met, who were all the persons who visited her in their flat, who were all the persons to whom she spoke on her mobile and the calls received by her on her mobile.
Lawyer Sharma told the inspector that he had already furnished all the details in the past during their various meetings and asked the inspector why he was asking for the same details again.
The inspector patiently explained to him that Sharma and her parents had already given the details in the past and the only purpose of his asking for such details again was to find out whether they had forgotten any little details in the past so that they could come out with such items now.
After thinking for some time and after consulting each other for a few minutes, Manohar Shinde told the inspector that they had not omitted any details in the past.
Then Sharma said, “OK, I will give a brief summary of her activities till the time of her disappearance”.
“She was a first year B.Com student of National College, Bandra West and her classes were over by 11 am or so, after which she went over to the office of Mr Walawalkar, who was running a successful event management business in Andheri West”.
“Even though she was taken as a trainee only, she impressed her superiors by her intelligent and hard work, so that they gave her more and more responsibilities. In the event management work, she was given the assignment of celebrity management on her own request, so that she could meet film stars, cricketers and other celebrities and try to make them the company’s customers for their various events”.
“In carrying out such work, she had to work late hours on many days and sometimes she had to go out of Mumbai also. The last time she had told her family that she was going to Pune and Ahmednagar on her next assignments and left home with her small handbag containing her clothes etc, after which she had not returned home yet for the past 3 months. Is that all correct?”
“Correct” said Shinde.
The lawyer continued, “Since her disappearance we had filed a missing person complaint with the police and informed you that we suspected Habib Rehman for her disappearance and asked you to question him. Is that correct?”
Again Shinde said “Correct”.
At this point Kulkarni said “But Habib had already been arrested before Vijaya’s disappearance in the bomb blasts case and lodged in a different jail pertaining to a different jurisdiction. So we could not question him”.
“And there was no reason for us to suspect him in this case as he was already in jail when Vijaya disappeared”.
But Shinde immediately protested that statement saying, “Habib was telling everyone that he loved Vijaya and inspite of our displeasure he continued to meet her again and again”.
“So we suspect that he would have planned to have her moved to some other city like Pune, Nasik or Ahmednagar etc to secretly marry her against our wishes. He might have had some companions with him who were sympathetic to his ideas and who could have carried out these activities in his absence due to his arrest”.
“Have you found out who were all his friends and whether they had a hand in such activities?”
(To be continued)
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