Abducted factory owner found burnt to death in Palghar

Updated: May 14, 2019, 19:08 IST | Diwakar Sharma

A forensic team will visit the spot where the businessman's body was found and collect samples for analysis. The Palghar police will hand over his remains to his family after a forensic examination.

Abducted factory owner found burnt to death in Palghar
Relatives of the deceased

The charred body of the 39-year-old businessman, who was abducted on Thursday in Palghar, was found from forest land in the district on Monday, the police said. The police have arrested three people, including the deceased's business rival.

A forensic team will visit the spot where Shaikh’s body was found and collect samples for analysis. The police will hand over Shaikh's remains to his family after a forensic examination.

Prashant Sankhe and his two accomplices kidnapped Arif Shaikh while he was on the way to his factory and smothered him with a handkerchief, police said. They then drove to the forest in Palghar and burnt his body. After disposing off Shaikh's body, they went to the house of Prashant's relative where they changed the vehicle and fled to Gujarat.

Prashant SankhePrashant Sankhe

Sources told mid-day that Sankhe had switched off his cell phone and taken a new number and mobile phone to contact his relatives. A police officer said Prashant Sankhe and Chinnu alias Samdev Sankhe were arrested from Vapi in Gujarat. The third accused, Prashant Mahajan, was arrested from Jalgaon in Maharashtra.

The police have also detained Smita Shetty, a close friend of Prashant Sankhe, for questioning. Prashant Sankhe worked at Shaikh's Alpha Metals before starting his own business which incurred losses.

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Shaikh used to supply machine parts from a company where Shetty was a manager. Shaikh found out that Shetty was stealing money from her company and informed her employer. "Shaikh had complained about Shetty to her employer and she was sacked. Since Prashant Sankhe and Shetty were good friends, they planned to eliminate Shaikh. In the past too, Prashant Sankhe had threatened Shaikh," said Gaurav Singh, Superintendent of Police, Palghar district. The police are likely to make more arrests in the case.

Shaikh is survived by his wife, two children and elderly parents who live in Mira Road.

After killing Shaikh, the kidnappers called their friends to the secluded forest land where they reached on motorcycle with cans of diesel to burn the body. Police have finally arrested the  lady Smita Shetty, who was detained for questioning, after cops found her involvement in the sensitive case. The cops have collected the charred bones of Shaikh and the forensic team will collect the DNA sample of the relative of deceased to match with the skeletal remains.

Also Read: Man held for growing marijuana, says he didn't know it was illegal in Palghar

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