THE MUMBAI Police Crime Branch has claimed in its supplementary chargesheet filed Tuesday in the Kandivli double murders that absconding accused Vidyadhar Rajbhar had ordered wooden boxes as early as in October 2015. The police had earlier said the boxes were ordered by Rajbhar to dispose the bodies of artist Hema Upadhyay and her lawyer Haresh Bhambhani who were killed in December 2015.
The police had claimed that a conspiracy meeting between Hema’s husband Chintan and the other accused, including Rajbhar, had taken place in Chembur in December 2015. The boxes were eventually not used as they were too heavy. The bodies of Hema and Bhambhani were found in a nullah in Kandivli on December 11, 2015, in cardboard boxes. The police later recovered the boxes from Rajbhar’s Kandivli godown after the accused were arrested.
The around 200-page supplementary chargesheet includes 21 witnesses, including the men who had sold the wooden boxes to Rajbhar. The chargesheet also includes statements of Hema’s uncle who has said he had called Chintan after Hema’s house help informed him that she had not returned home.
“I called him (Chintan) on December 12, 2015, and asked him whether he knew Hema’s whereabouts. He told me that he did not have a clue and that she had a lot of friends and may have gone out with them. I was trying to make further inquiries but was told by Chintan that he had not spoken to her for over eight years,” the witness statement reads.
The chargesheet also includes the statement of the partner of Rajbhar’s sister who has told the police that he had received a call from the accused on February 1, 2016, while he was on the run. “When I tried to convince him to turn himself in to the police, he hung up and then his number was switched off,” the witness has said. Rajbhar has remain untraced.
The chargesheet also includes several forensic reports. While the police had claimed that Poonam Bhambhani, the deceased lawyer’s wife, had said Hema showed her a painting that Chintan had allegedly made and sent her on her phone with the heading, “I will destroy you”, the Forensic Science Laboratory report of Chintan’s laptop, hard disks state that “image files with message ‘I WILL DESTROY YOU’ were not found”.
Meanwhile, Chintan through his lawyer Bharat Mangnani filed an application Tuesday seeking directions to the investigation officer to place the entire investigation before the court. Chintan claimed that while the police had recorded statements of four witnesses, including his brother, it was not included in the chargesheet. “…the accused has a right to rely upon that evidence and tell the court to take that evidence into account while framing the charges,” his plea states.