Mumbai: Woman, grandchildren killed; cops suspect her rackets led to murders

While the boy’s throat was slit, his sister and grandmother were stabbed repeatedly; blood stains were found on a toilet near the murder spot

A 50-year-old woman and her two young grandkids were brutally murdered in their sleep in the wee hours last morning. The family of three was found lying in a pool of blood in their home in Malwani after they were stabbed multiple times by an unidentified assailant.

Babli Shaw (50) and her grandchildren, Aaryan (13) and Shamiya (10), had been stabbed multiple times
Babli Shaw (50) and her grandchildren, Aaryan (13) and Shamiya (10), had been stabbed multiple times

The motive is yet to be established, but the police suspect the crime was committed by someone familiar, who may have held a grudge against the grandmother, who ran several illegal activities from her home.

Cops at the Malwani house where the triple murder took place early last morning. The grandmother, Babli, was allegedly running several illegal rackets from here. Pics/Satej Shinde
Cops at the Malwani house where the triple murder took place early last morning. The grandmother, Babli, was allegedly running several illegal rackets from here. Pics/Satej Shinde

The deceased have been identified as Babli Shaw (50) and her grandchildren, 13-year-old Aaryan Sheikh aka Ammo and 10-year-old Shamiya Sheikh aka Shammo. Their bodies were discovered in their ground plus one house (room no 92) in the New Collector Compound (NCC) in Malwani, Malad west. Aryan’s throat had been slit, Shamiya had stab wounds on the abdomen and from the neck up, while Babli had wounds on the neck, chest and abdomen. The investigators also found the murder weapon — a kitchen knife.

The children had been living with their grandmother for several years, ever since their mother died of cancer and their father remarried six years ago. Their mother (Babli’s daughter, Afsha) had married their father Ismail Sheikh alias Machchiwala (37) against the wishes of his family. After she died of cancer six years ago, Ismail married another woman and began to live with her. He wanted to keep both children, but Babli forbade it. She kept the kids, but insisted that he pay for their expenses. He would often visit them and chip in with the finances.

Illegal income
The grandmother was no saint, and had plenty of income flowing in from unlawful activities, alleged the neighbours. Sources said the 50-year-old was a loan shark who would lend money for huge interest and locals would often end up mortgaging their houses with her. Investigations have also revealed that Babli would make a killing by selling booze from her house on dry days. Furthermore, neighbours claimed that she was also running a prostitution racket in one of the rooms in the house. The cops now suspect she might have been murdered by someone who failed to pay their loan or held some other grudge against her.

The cops think the culprit was known to Babli as there were no signs of forced entry. The main door was locked from outside — as was the custom at Babli’s house. The back door was found open and the killer likely escaped from there. Cops confirmed that jewellery had not been stolen from the bodies, but they are yet to determine whether any valuables were robbed from the cupboard.

Killer’s blood found?
The police have found traces of blood in the washbasin in Babli’s home, where they think the killer washed his hands. They also found traces of blood in a public toilet in plot number 25 near Babli’s house and they suspect that the killer may have injured himself during the crime and fled there. There is a trail of blood near the restroom and blood-stained foot and fingerprints have also been found on the toilet wall. Cops are now combing CCTV footage from near the toilet to identify the suspect.

Cop speak
ACP Shrirang Nadagoda said, “Around 10.30 am, we came to know about triple murder and immediately rushed to the spot. The boy’s body was on the bed, while the remaining two were on the floor. They had been attacked by a sharp kitchen knife, and it looks like the killer escaped from the back door. The bodies have been sent for post-mortem at Bhagwati Hospital. Prima facie, it seems the murder took place because of personal rivalry.”

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