LESS THAN 24 hours after Riya Gautam, a 21-year-old aspiring airhostess, was stabbed seven times just metres away from her Ram Nagar Extension house in Shahdara area Wednesday, her brother said she had lodged a complaint against the accused in April. “About three months ago, she told us that a man was harassing and stalking her. We had lodged a complaint at the Mansarovar Park police station. Police told us that he was in Gujarat and that they would investigate,” Ashish, the victim’s elder brother, said.
Riya succumbed to injuries at GTB Hospital early Thursday. CCTV footage from Wednesday shows her being slapped by the accused, Adil alias Munne Khan, in the presence of passersby. It also shows her trying to escape by entering a photo studio even as Adil runs behind her wielding a knife. “She was stopped by the accused. Minutes later, he started slapping her and then stabbed her seven times inside the shop,” police sources said.
Special Commissioner and chief spokesperson of Delhi Police, Dependra Pathak, said an officer of the rank of Additional DCP has been appointed to look into why action was not taken after the complaint was received three months ago. Pathak told The Indian Express that raids were being conducted to track Adil, a private taxi driver, and that he would be arrested soon. “After scanning call data records of the victim and CCTV footage of Wednesday’s incident, we came to know she was talking to the accused before the incident,” Pathak said.
Police sources said, “In January, he came to the institute where she studied in Nirman Vihar. The two got into an argument. He misbehaved with Riya and she allegedly slapped him. After he threatened her, she told her family about him.” Police added that she had changed her mobile number two days ago. After the complaint was filed in April, Adil was asked to join the investigation but he allegedly fled to Gujarat. “He came to Delhi on Tuesday and approached Riya again,” police sources said.
Adil asked family to leave: Police
Minutes after stabbing Riya, the accused called his mother and younger brother and asked them to leave the city and go their village in Aligarh. Several teams have been sent to Aligarh and Ghaziabad to nab the accused, police said. Sources said police conducted raids at his home but found the door locked. “Police managed to trace their location and are questioning them,” the sources added.