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'I wish I'd killed my wife instead'

It turns out that bungling his murder bid on his wife on Monday is just one in a long list of failures encountered by Vijay Sangelkar (35) – the farmer also failed his Std X exams. It was this sharp divide between him and his graduate wife that was the root of all acrimony between the couple, he has revealed.

Vijay Krishna Sangelkar
Sinister plot: Vijay Krishna Sangelkar, a farmer from Sangola in Sawantwadi, being led by police officials

Sangelkar’s frustrations over a prolonged court battle with his wife culminated in a near-fatal attack on aspiring company secretary Sonal Lapshia on Monday morning (‘Farmer stabs woman mistaking her for wife,’ MiD DAY, December 18).

Sonal Lapshia
Sonal Lapshia, the victim of mistaken identity . File pics

In an interview with MiD DAY, Sangelkar said, “I thought she was my wife because of the tight jeans and scarf. She used to call me gaundal [bumpkin]. When we married, she had only passed Std XII, but completed her graduation afterwards. I failed my Std X exam. I deeply regret having attacked an innocent woman, but I wish I had succeeded in killing my wife.”

Sangelkar’s other blunder was in failing to trace his wife’s whereabouts accurately. According to the police, Sangelkar had attempted to lure his wife to a park in Dadar on Sunday, where he planned to murder her. “She even agreed to go along with him and met him at Nalasopara. But she got off at the next station while Sangelkar ended up in Dadar. She then switched off her phone,” said Senior Inspector Suresh Parab of Matunga police station. Sangelkar, a farmer from Sawantwadi, slept on the platform as he had no other place to stay.

He decided to make a second attempt the next day. Believing his wife would alight at Dadar station and board a Sion-bound bus to get to her workplace, Sangelkar waited outside Dadar station bus stop, after confirming on the phone that she would arrive in Dadar. He had no idea that Vaishali would board another train to Sion from the station.

Sangelkar has two brothers in Goa, who no longer speak to him after Vaishali dragged them to court over dowry allegations. Sangelkar had spent Rs 4 lakh in litigation, and was required to pay maintenance to his wife. In her statement, Vaishali told the police she was fighting for her rights, and had suspected that her husband would try to harm her. Sangelkar will be in police custody till December 21. 

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