While preliminary investigations into the murder of Arun Kumar Tikku had revealed that the main accused Vijay Palande had also planned to kill his son, small-time actor Anuj Tikku, cops from Crime Branch unit IX have revealed that Palande had drugged Anuj and forced him to write his own suicide note, which he planned to use later.
The cops looked at Palande’s bank lockers yesterday, as part of the investigation, and stumbled upon what could be a crucial piece of evidence when the trials begin — no jewellery or stolen cash, but a suicide note signed by Anuj. The note was discovered in the locker of a bank located at Andheri.
“The note had been signed by Anuj Tikku,” said a police officer from the Crime Branch. “When we inquired with Anuj about the suicide note, he said he was forced to write it by Palande, and was under the influence of drugs.” Cops believe that Palande had planned to bump off Anuj after eliminating his father. He had planned to pass off Anuj’s murder as a case of suicide spurred by grief for the loss of his father.
“Arun Kumar had come to Mumbai to convince his son to return to Delhi, where he stayed. Palande, who was staying as a paying guest with the family, realised that Arun Kumar was the only obstacle that he had to remove in order to usurp the Samarth Angan flat in Lokhandwala, Andheri (West). So he decided to first kill Arun Kumar, and then do away with Anuj, and stage it as a suicide,” said the officer.
Everything went according to plan, and Palande and his accomplices murdered Arun Kumar on April 7. On the day of the killing, Palande got Anuj heavily drunk and took him to Chiplun. But vigilant neighbours sensed that something was amiss, and informed the cops, foiling Palande’s plans. “Palande was planning to amass all the property owned by Anuj after killing him. The family owns real estate in Delhi and Mumbai,” said the officer.