Bodies of Mira Road restaurant's manager, worker found in water tank

Updated: Jun 06, 2020, 07:33 IST | Diwakar Sharma | Mumbai

Cops probe incident at Mira Road after the discovery of decomposed bodies of staffers staying on bar premises

Sabari restaurant in Mira Road from where the bodies were recovered. Pic/Hanif Patel
Sabari restaurant in Mira Road from where the bodies were recovered. Pic/Hanif Patel

The wife of Mira Road-based restaurant and bar Sabari's manager had been frantically trying to contact him over phone since the past couple of days but he remained unreachable. On Thursday morning when she called up his number again, the person on the other end said she had dialed a wrong one, but she kept calling. Finally, after multiple calls, the person revealed that her husband had died and his body was lying inside a water tank in the restaurant along with another worker's. After the hotel's owner informed the cops, they recovered the bodies from the same location and registered a murder case. On tracking the manager's number, cops traced the main accused to Pune and arrested him on Friday.

Injury marks

The deceased have been identified as Harish Shetty, 42, the restaurant's manager and cleaner Naresh Pandit, 58. Speaking to mid-day, senior inspector of Mira Road police station, Sandip Kadam said, "Both the bodies had injury marks on their faces and backs. They were fully decomposed." Based on a complaint filed by the restaurant's owner, Gangadhar Payyade, the cops registered an FIR against a staff Kallu Yadav, who was arrested on Friday.

"After Payyade approached the Mira Road police station and informed us on Thursday evening, a team reached the spot and recovered the bodies from the water tank. They have been sent for post-mortem," said deputy superintendent of police, Shantaram Valvi.

According to sources, next to the restaurant, Payyade owns a 2BHK flat in a housing society where his 14 staff members reside. However, he lives in Goregaon. The security guard of the building, Tek Bahadur Chhetri told mid day that most of the staffers had returned to their hometowns.

"Of late, only three staffers were there – the manager and two others. Almost a week ago they left the flat and started staying inside the restaurant. On Thursday, the cops opened it and removed the bodies," said Chhetri.

'Motive not yet known'

Senior inspector Kadam said, "The CCTV cameras are non-functional as the restaurant was being renovated. The motive behind the murder is not yet known. The FIR has been registered under sections 302 (murder) and 201 (destruction of evidence) of IPC." The crime branch is conducting a parallel investigation in the case.

Sources told mid-day that Shetty's wife had been telling Payyade that her husband's phone was switched off since May 31. "Though Payyade assured her that he would check on him, he remained busy. However, on Thursday when she called him again, a person responded to it and said that she had dialed a wrong number. She kept calling and after a couple of times, the person said that her husband was dead and his body was lying inside a water tank at the restaurant. She immediately informed Payyade, who then approached the police," said the source.

Accused to be questioned

"The cyber cell of Mira Road police started tracking Shetty's number and traced Kallu to Pune. A team from the police station was sent to Pune in the wee hours of Friday and he was arrested. He will be brought to the Mira Road police station and interrogated to know the motive behind the double murder and if anyone had helped him in committing the crime," the source added.

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