'Best friend' kills man for Rs 20 L jewellery

Maharashtra Housing Board (MHB) Colony police claims to have solved the murder mystery of Prashant Rahatwal (25), a Dahisar-based jewellery designer, by arresting his best friend for the gruesome killing.

Friendship gone wrong: Surendra Patil (top right) and his associates (bottom right) Manohar Patil and (bottom left) Jitendra Bamgude along with others killed Prashant Rahatwal (top left) and then buried his body in a forest 4 km away from Baphale in Alibaug


Cops had found Rahatwal’s decomposed body in a forest — about 4 km away from Baphale in Alibaug. Rahatwal had gone missing from Dahisar on July 29.

Apparently, he had stolen ornaments worth Rs 20 lakh from the shop where he was working as a manager.

On July 30, the owner of the jewellery unit lodged a complaint against him at MHB police station.

Soon after that cops retrieved Rahatwal’s call detail records, which revealed he had made several calls to Surendra Patil (28).

Devious designs
Police questioned Rahatwal’s fiancée Kavita, who revealed that a day before the deceased went missing, Patil had called him to Alibaug. According to Kavita, Patil was planning to open a wine shop and had asked Rahatwal to bring the jewellery along so he could show it to the present owner of the shop and gain his confidence. 

Santosh Dalvi, investigation officer from MHB police station, said, “Patil even asked Rahatwal not to inform any of his family members that he’s taking the jewellery with him.”

He added, “We suspected Patil right from the beginning. He misguided us by saying he had not been to Alibaug and kept changing his statements. Finally, on Saturday, he confessed that that he had killed Rahatwal with the help of four friends.”

The other accused — Jitendra Bamugude, Yashwant Patil alias Balu, Manohar Patil and Raju Malak — too were soon arrested. Besides, cops have also apprehended two persons, Ashok Jain and Dilip Jain, who had purchased the jewellery from Surendra Patil. All of them have been booked under several sections of IPC.

Meanwhile, Mayur Bhatt, Rahatwal’s friend and neighbour, said that the deceased was just trying to help his friend. “He took the jewellery from the shop and was hoping to return it by the end of the day. He didn’t intend to cheat anyone, as he was a very honest person,” he said. Bhatt added, “Patil is so cold-hearted that after killing Rahatwal, he had the nerve to visit the deceased’s family members and console them.” 

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