Pages from Chintan Upadhyay’s personal notebook, which have been attached to the charge sheet, show a man deeply affected by a broken marriage
Around 15 pages of Chintan Upadhyay’s personal diary, which the Kandivali police have attached to the charge sheet, reveal a man deeply troubled by the last moments of a rocky marriage and the draining court proceedings.
The police had on Friday filed the 1,658-page charge sheet citing 30 witnesses against Chintan, accusing him of murdering his former wife Hema and her lawyer Harish Bhambhani in December 2015.
Sketches and words in Chintan Upadhyay’s diary reveal his state of mind
Besides Chintan, the police have arrested Shivkumar Rajbhar, Pradeep Rajbhar and Vijay Rajbhar. Another key accused Vidyadhar Rajbhar, who is accused of carrying out the twin hits on Chintan’s behalf, is absconding.
The handwritten diary pages, a copy of which is available with mid-day, have, besides Chintan’s musings, comical and lurid sketches and drawings of phalluses.
Incidentally, Hema had sued Chintan for obscenity after he drew similarly explicit sketches in the bedroom of the house the two shared. The court eventually dismissed that case, saying Chintan had the artistic liberty to draw what he wanted on his bedroom wall. Some diary entries speak about how pained Chintan was when Hema filed that case.
Unable to nab Vidyadhar, it is clear from the charge sheet that the police have relied on a lot of tenuous points while framing the charge sheet against Chintan. mid-day was the first to report on December 18 about how the police were even citing a song titled ‘Alvida’ that Chintan had posted on his Facebook profile a day before the murders.
“A case in the court can make a person an animal who is wild and just want to kill,” one segment of the diary submitted by the police reads. “In most cases, an animal attacks keeping self in the position that it itself should not be hurt, but human is the only animal who can destroy self to destroy others. And the purpose is very clear.” (The excerpts have been printed here verbatim).
The charge sheet said that the date corresponds to the time when the couple was fighting a bitter divorce battle.
In another place Chintan writes that he had not done anything wrong since the time two separated, but Hema was always spoiling for a fight.
“She doesn’t leave the house,” this part reads. “I feel that I just want to destroy everything between us. Anyway, somehow I have to discipline myself and start finding a way. I hope I do it. I hope I can remove all the negativity and make a happy environment.”
The home the two shared was also a major point of contention during the divorce proceedings. This too figures prominently in his diary.
“If I don’t go back to her, my life will go running to courts but I don’t love her, don’t trust her at all,” it reads. “After this case, I don’t want to go to my own house as I feel she can put any other case like rape or domestic violence.”
Defends sexual art
He also speaks about how he was isolated in the art community after Hema filed the obscenity case and how it broke him to find himself alone at a crucial juncture in life.
“There was not a single help or support came to me to say that she is wrong for charging me for obscenity, that was shocking,” Chintan says in the diary. “Only close friends helped me. It had created a kind of impression on me. I don’t trust Indian art people. Feel and can see their double standard. Her galleries still supporting her many art institution still showing her. I wish to know what are they think about it. I feel like a victim. Why this victimisation. Why can’t I do art that reflects sexuality? Why I should do suttle work. Why? Why?”
This extended entry further says: “In front of the family court, she was charging me that I make pornographic images on wall of my room and in my painting to create odd situation. She and her lawyer decided to make me run. Me more uncomfortable and they put a criminal case in lower court in Bandra. The case of obscenity and representation of women. She forgot she gifted me four pornographic books from Japan. Visit of hers long back and she was aware from my college time, sexuality in India and representation of it was my main theme. I am anyway vulnerable to express my idea in public and showing them against the taboos in India. She as an artist has a responsibility but used her being female and open ends of interpretation against me.”
The diary also contains several parts that read like notes to self. Chintan addresses himself in the third person in these parts. “Chintan, I was telling you about a dream I had after all these overlapping ideas in my mind,” said one entry. “And I slept. I dreamt that all art people forcing me to go back to my wife and save the marriage. They told me not to do this kind of sexual work.”
Another note marked to himself reads: “Chintan, I am sorry I was busy working for the exhibition. I have been really clear what I want to do and enjoyed yesterday was bit sad day. Today, going to Baroda to sell my house. I want to disconnect with everything connected to Hema or her family. They have been really nasty. Her brother told my property agents that the house is in dispute what a nerd.”
After boarding a flight for Baroda, Chintan wrote: “Chintan, I am in the flight and getting many ideas. It is so strange when I wanted to see a movie and opened my hard disk, the first film opened is “Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro” is there any sign in it or is there just a coincidence?”