Indrani Mukerjea had allegedly promised Rs 10 lakh to her driver, Shyam Rai, for helping to murder her daughter Sheena Bora in 2012, said sources in the police, who added that she later reneged on this promise and only gave him Rs 1 lakh.
Just yesterday, mid-day reported how Shyam’s wife Sharda claimed that 'rich people' had framed him in the case (‘My husband is scared of the dark, how could he kill someone?’). This paper had also reported yesterday that Indrani had dismissed Shyam from his job some six months ago, saying she no longer needed a driver as she was settling abroad.
However, according to a police official, not only did Shyam help murder Sheena and then dispose of her body, but he was to be paid for it. In fact, the source added that when Indrani went back on her offer, he had even considered going to the police.
“Shyam was very upset that he was given Rs 1 lakh instead of Rs 10 lakh that had been promised to him, and he had decided to go to the police station and narrate the whole case to the police in 2012 itself. But he got scared that he would be arrested for helping Indrani as well, and so he chose to keep quiet.”
Thinking back to 2012, which was when the murder took place, Shyam’s wife, Sharda recalled, “My husband never got any such money. I remember he was under stress that time, but whenever I asked him about it, he would just smile and say everything was fine.”
Family in distress
When this reporter met Sharda, she barely had R300 left with which to support her eight-year-old daughter and three-month-old son. She was worried about managing on her own, as the rent for their tiny one-room house alone was Rs 3,500 a month. With the murder case in focus across the city, their landlord had even threatened to turn them out on the streets.
“I am a housewife and Shyam was the sole earning member of the family. I don’t know how I am going to survive. I learnt about his arrest after I got a call from my native place. Since then all our relatives have broken all relations with us,” said Sharda.