Did neighbours see killers' shoes outside victim's flat?

May 09, 2012, 09:43 IST | Vinay Dalvi

Cops say 51-year-old wife of builder Jayant Ajmera never entertained strangers, claim neighbours spotted 3 pairs of footwear, possibly belonging to assailants, outside her door on day of murder

The police suspect that three unidentified persons, who had paid builder Jayant Ajmera’s wife a visit on May 7, may be the ones who slit her throat and fled with Rs 50,000 in cash and diamond jewellery worth Rs 1 crore. Police officials speculate that one of the accused was known to the victim, Chetna, who reportedly never opened the door to strangers.

Ghatkopar Murder
Known killer? The house in Vaishali Apartments, 60 Feet Road, Ghatkopar (East) where Chetna was killed. Cops speculate that one of the accused was known to the victim, as she reportedly never opened the door to strangers. Pic/Vijay Bate

MiD DAY had reported yesterday that Chetna (51) was found dead on Monday at her house in Vaishali Apartments, 60 Feet Road, Ghatkopar (East). The housemaid and the carpenters who were working on the windows had left the house around 3 pm after which she was alone. “Daily, around 6 pm, Chetna would go for a stroll with her friends from the neighbourhood. On Monday, when her friends went to her house, she did not answer the door. The women found three pairs of chappals outside the house, assumed she was busy, and left,” said Ashok Bhanushali, secretary of Vaishali Apartments.

He added, “She did not open the door to anyone unknown. Once her new driver brought some sweets to the house but she asked him to leave the packet outside the door and leave.” Suresh Nirmal, senior police inspector of Pant Nagar police station, said, “The three people who had come to the house around 6 pm might have been involved in the crime. We suspect the role of an insider as there is no forced entry in the house,” said Nirmal.

The police are now trying to locate a cook who used to work for the family and is presently untraceable. “His mobile phone has been switched off. He had left the job at the Ajmera household in February,” said a Crime Branch officer. The accused who cleaned out a wooden cupboard could not open the steel almirahs, said the police. The building does not have any CCTV surveillance, which has made it difficult for cops to identify the accused.

Police said Chetna was alone in the apartment on May 7 when the murder-cum-robbery took place. When Ajmera returned home at about 8 pm, he rang the doorbell several times, and on receiving no answer, used his keys to enter the flat. He found Chetna lying in a pool of blood in the living room. Her throat had been slashed. The kitchen knife used by the killers has been recovered from the flat. Police also noticed a deep hole in her head indicating she was hit with an object before being killed. 

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