The naked body of a 20-year-old girl bearing injury marks on her private parts was found at Firozpur village just five kilometres away from her native village in Mirzapur district Thursday, five days after she had left home for Mumbai to appear in an exam for joining Mumbai Police.
“Evidence suggests that she was murdered. Bleeding was seen from her private parts. We are waiting for postmortem report to ascertain whether she was also sexually assaulted,” A K Pandey, additional SP (anti-Naxal operation), Mirzapur, said.
The police have registered a case of murder on the basis of a complaint from the woman’s cousin, in which a 28-year-old man, said to be her distant relative, has been named as accused.
According to the police, the body of the girl, a student of an intermediate college, was found near a nullah in Firozpur village Thursday morning. “There were no clothes on the body and a bag and a diary was found near it. There were some injuries on the body, besides black mark around the neck, indicating that she may have been strangled to death,” said a police officer.
He said, some clothes, apparently belonging to the woman, were also found near her body. The diary found from spot contained the name and the cellphone number of the accused, Anjani Kumar Patel.
“When the police called on that number, he gave evasive answers. He said he was at home in his native village Nuaon. But as soon as he realised that it was police on the other side, he disconnected and fled,” said Mirzapur SP Balikaran Singh.
Further, the police also found a railway ticket of ordinary class issued from Lokmanya Tilak Terminus in Mumbai for Mughal Serai. The ticket was dated January 27.
An official associated with the investigation said: “It appears that the accused came from Mumbai to Mirzapur and met the woman. What happened after that and how they reached a place, which is nearly five km from the woman’s house, is a matter of investigation.”
Investigations revealed that the woman’s father used to work in Mumbai in a factory. The accused, Anjani Kumar Patel, is also said to have been employed in a private firm in Mumbai.
The woman had left the house on January 26 reportedly telling her mother that she was going to appear in an entrance examination for joining the police in Mumbai. However, since then, she was not in contact with her family members.
“So far we have not come across any information about the entrance examination. At this point, Anjani is the prime suspect. His arrest will help us establish the entire sequence of events,” the Mirzapur SP said, adding that efforts to nab him were on.