Byculla jail inmate's murder: The stunning twists and turns of the case
Manjula Shetye, an inmate in Byculla prison was brutally hammered inside the jail by some prison staffers on June 23 at 9 am. The incident happened because Manjula Shetye, who was made warden of her barrack, complained over missing morning rations of two eggs and five pieces of bread that were missing. (Read More)
Over a week after the death of inmate Manjula Shetye at Byculla Women's Jail, the police finally arrested jail guard Bindu Naikodi and five other jail officials for their role in the murder. Crime branch officials later arrested Manisha Pokharkar, Waseema Shaikh, Sheetal Shegaonkar, Surekha Gulve and Aarti Shingane. (Read More)
She was allegedly summoned by a woman jailor Manisha Pokharkar and beaten up brutally, according to witness. Shetye was rushed to the Sir J.J. Hospital nearby but was pronounced dead on arrival. According to police, she was beaten up and canes thrust into her private parts during the assault by six prison staffers.
Indrani Mukerjea, one of the prime accused in the Sheena Bora murder case and ex-media baron was among the prisoners who were protesting Manjula Shetye. Mukerjea informed a Special CBI Court that she was beaten up and threatened with sexual assault during the violence in Byculla Jail
Naikodi was accused of disrobing Shetye before allegedly beating her to death. Accused jailer Manisha Pokharkar had assaulted Shetye to settle old scores. Pokharkar was holding a grudge against Shetye, who was trying to become the prisoners' leader in jail
The 40-year-old started gaining followers in jail primarily because of her yoga and fitness lessons for the other inmates. Her skills had earned her many followers. Soon, Manjula started using this newfound fame for her personal benefits. "She used to get massages from inmates, who'd also oil her hair. Whoever gave her such services would get kickbacks."
During daily rounds, Pokharkar had warned Manjula to stop favouring her 'followers'. This warning had triggered an altercation between two, end of which Pokharkar had warned Manjula 'Me tula ek divas dhada shikven' (One day I will teach you a lesson). The tussle of who is the boss of the jail ultimately led to Shetye's death.
Among the kickbacks was Shetye granting more time to inmates to meet their relatives. The usual time given to meet relatives is 15 to 20 minutes, but Manjula would grant 30 to 40 minutes to those inmates who were her followers.
After her WhatsApp messages asking colleagues to support their 'sisters' accused of murdering a Byculla jail inmate Manjula Shetye, DIG Swati Sathe has written to DG (prisons), asking to be removed from the inquiry committee set up to probe the death. Citing media reports about her collecting funds for the accused jail officials, Sathe claimed it would not be appropriate to continue as committee head, when her role was in doubt. (Read More)
A Byculla jail inmate on Thursday took to the witness stand to give chilling details of what she witnessed the day Manjula was allegedly killed. Vaishali Mudale, who is an under trial in a corruption case told the Bombay High Court that on June 23, all the inmates were tasked with cleaning wheat. Manjula was part of Vaishali's team. While they were cleaning, an officer came to their barrack and asked Manjula to accompany her to the jail officer's cabin. Manjula was there between 10 am to 12 pm. At the time, six officers were with her. Twenty minutes after Manjula was taken, Vaishali and others heard her screaming. Manjula was also heard saying, "Mala vachva, me marun jaien" (Save me [or] I will die). Vaishali said they also heard sounds of someone being beaten up with lathis. She also revealed that she saw the officers pulling Manjula by her hair and throwing her in barrack no 5. (Read More)
Suspended senior cop Hiralal Jadhav points fingers at DIG (prisons) Swati Sathe's credibility to conduct an unbiased inquest into the death of Byculla women's prison inmate Manjula Shetye and the riots that followed. He writes to Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis alleging Sathe sent messages on a WhatsApp group, asking fellow cops to support jail officials held for Shetye's alleged murder. Senior jail officials have said that Jadhav is doing all this to take revenge from the jail authorities, who have suspended him in a sexual harassment case. (Read More)
According to sources, Byculla jail officials told the Crime Branch that Indrani Mukerjea, had asked others to mix chilli and pickle powder in water and throw on the jail staff during the riot. The officials claim Mukerjea also asked them to burn newspapers and other jail equipment. Sources also said that in their preliminary investigation, the crime branch was told that Indrani had allegedly given several instructions to the other inmates, one of which was to make the protest against Shetye's death big and use children as human shields. She supposedly snatched the microphone to make these announcements in jail. (Read More)
It was the prison officials who used the children of inmates at Byculla jail as human shields, not me — this is what Indrani Mukerjea's statement says, given in the case of riots that took place on the premises following inmate Manjula Shetye's murder. Giving her side of the story in the case for the first time, Mukerjea said the jail officials threatened to harm the children if the inmates didn't stop their protest. She added that she didn't give any instructions to use the kids as human shields and that, in fact, the police blackmailed all of them to stop creating a ruckus if they cared about the children's safety
Pressure is mounting on the jail administration post the brutal murder of inmate Manjula Shetye at the Byculla jail, more evident after jail superintendent Chandramani Indurkar was wheeled into JJ hospital in the wee hours of Tuesday. Indurkar, who is facing an internal probe, has been on the receiving end from both the jail administration and Bombay High Court, which has sought an explanation for the delay in taking Shetye to the hospital. In-charge of the prison, Indurkar stays on the jail premises. Sources added that in the wee hours of July 18, Indurkar complained of uneasiness with pain in chest; he was also sweating heavily. Dr S A Khan, who also stays in the prison quarters, was summoned; he advised that Indurkar be taken to JJ hospital as it was "an emergency." (Picture for representational purposes)