April 24, 2012, was a big day in Indrani Mukerjea’s calendar. Just hours before she and Sanjeev Khanna met Sheena Bora and took her for what would be the last drive of her life, Indrani had also allegedly drugged her son, Mikhail.
Mikhail Bora (in blue) at Khar police station yesterday. Police chief Rakesh Maria said Mikhail has given them some points, which they will probe further. Pic/Sameer Markande
Sanjeev and Indrani had left him at a Worli hotel, hoping that he would be unconscious after they returned from murdering Sheena, and they would bump him off too. The suspicious Mikhail, however, escaped from the hotel when he began feeling groggy.
The Hiltop Hotel in Worli, where Mikhail was allegedly drugged. Officials said Sanjeev used to visit Mumbai frequently and would stay in this hotel during the visits. Pic/Tushar Satam
Good day for murder?
Mikhail, who made this startling revelation while giving his statement, told the police that he had been called to Mumbai on the pretext of discussing some property matter.
A room had been booked for him at the Hiltop Hotel in Worli, which, police officials revealed, is also allegedly where Sanjeev used to stay during his frequent visits to Mumbai. Indrani’s son told the police that his suspicions were roused when he saw Sanjeev at the hotel, but decided to speak to them nevertheless.
He was allegedly given a spiked drink by the duo in his hotel room, after which they left him there to go meet Sheena, whom they had called near the National College in Bandra. After drugging and strangulating Sheena, they allegedly went back to the Hiltop Hotel, where they had hoped to find Mikhail unconscious, only to find that he wasn’t in his room.
Mikhail told the police that his suspicions were heightened when he began feeling groggy after sipping the drink he had been given. He suspected something was amiss and decided to flee the hotel. “We have learnt this from Mikhail and Sanjeev during interrogation,” said an officer from Khar police station.
“If Mikhail Bora had not been alert, he could have been Indrani, Sanjeev Khanna and driver Shyam Rai’s second victim, after they killed Sheena. This statement by Mikhail will be a key piece of evidence for us,” said the officer.
Found Sheena’s passport: CP
During a press briefing last night, Police Commissioner Rakesh Maria — who, along with Joint CP (Law and order) Deven Bharti, was part of the questioning team — said Sanjeev had accepted that he was complicit in the crime.
He also said that Mikhail had given them some points which they will verify and that they had found Sheena’s passport in Dehradun, which negates the claim that she was in the United States.
How much did Peter know?
Peter Mukerjea’s lawyer, Gunjan Mangla said yesterday, “Peter Mukerjea was asked to give a copy of his passport by the police and so he visited the police station and handed over the copy to them. No statement from Mukerjea was recorded by police during that time.”
Peter Mukerjea at the Khar police station yesterday
Officials said they will call Peter for his statement later and that they wanted to ask him several things. Sources said Mikhail has claimed that he had sent an email to Peter informing him that Sheena and he were Indrani’s children and not her siblings.
Indrani’s father, Upendra Kumar Bora, has also claimed to the media that not long after Indrani and Peter’s marriage, he had also written a letter to Peter’s office informing him about Mikhail and Sheena’s true relationship with Indrani. After this letter, Indrani reportedly had a tough time convincing Peter.
“Upendra had sent the letter when he learnt that Indrani had got married to Peter, who was the then CEO of Star India. After the letter was sent, Indrani met her father and promised to give him money regularly for Sheena and Mikhail’s upbrin-ging,” said the officer, adding that they will try and ascertain how much knowledge Peter had of the whole matter.
Indrani a tough nut to crack
Police officials said that Indrani was proving to be a tough nut to crack and was not cooperating with the investigations. They said, however, that they are getting a lot of information from Sanjeev Khanna, who was Indrani’s second husband and is the third accused in the case.
Indrani Mukerjea, Sanjeev Khanna and driver Shyam Rai were taken to the Khar police station for questioning yesterday. Pics/Sameer Markande
Sanjeev allegedly used to come to Mumbai frequently and used to stay at the Hiltop Hotel. He was in regular touch with Indrani, said officials, adding that they have Call Detail Records (CDRs) to prove this.
The cops said they have learnt that Sanjeev used to harass Indrani when they were married and she had lodged several complaints against him. She finally applied for divorce and got it after a long battle, along with the custody of their only daughter Vidhie.