Mumbai: Car washer gets life term for killing widow
A 40-year-old car washer was sentenced to life imprisonment by a special women’s court yesterday for the murder of a 67-year-old woman in her posh Versova flat nearly three years ago.
Judge SKS Razvi convicted Dharmendra Satyaprakash Singh, who washed vehicles of occupants of Beach Classic building, Versova, for strangling Vimla Jaiswal (67), a widow who lived alone in her flat on April 24, 2014. Two other accused of the crime - a domestic help, Sherbahadur Saud (35), and a security guard, Santosh Sharma (43) - were, however, acquitted.
Accidental death assumed
Jaiswal, who had been living alone since her husband’s death seven years prior, was found dead by her brother-in-law and retired High Court judge, Subhash Jaiswal, in her apartment. She had no children.
Based on the initial investigation, the Versova police registered a case of accidental death. But her medical examination report revealed that she had died of strangulation. The police then began questioning all occupants of the building, during which the sweeper revealed that he had heard noises from Jaiswal’s apartment on the morning of the murder.
The police then spotted Saud, a domestic help of a resident, on CCTV camera footage, entering the building twice. On being questioned, he confessed to having killed Jaiswal with two accomplices, Singh and Sharma.
Hatching the conspiracy
In their confessions, the three said they had planned to rob Jaiswal for two months prior to killing her after hearing that her apartment was valued at R8 crore. On April 24, 2014, Singh gained into her home by claiming that some of her clothes had fallen off the clothesline. As soon as Jaiswal opened the door, Singh pushed her in and strangled her with a rope. Saud, too, allegedly entered the flat, while Sharma was the lookout. The three then decamped with only her gold chain and continued to work in the building as usual.
The three were arrested within five days of the murder. Jaiswal’s gold chain was recovered from Singh.