AROUND 10 YEARS after the murder of 22-year-old MBA student Neha Ahlawat, the Chandigarh Police finally closed the investigation filing an untraced report in the district courts, Sector 43, stating all efforts were made but assailants were not traced. Neha, a resident of Sector 38 West, was found murdered in a semi-naked condition near Karan Taxi Stand in Sector 38 in July 2010. Her two cell phones were missing.
Later, one of the cell phones was recovered from a Sector 15 man, who had claimed that he purchased the cell phone from a mobile shop in Colony Number 5. The shopkeeper claimed a person had sold the cell phone to him at a cheap rate.
In 2013, a report from CFSL, Sector 36, had confirmed that the victim was sexually assaulted before being murdered. Neha was returning from her tuition in Sector 15 on her two-wheeler when the incident happened. Although a case was registered at the Sector 39 police station, the probe was transferred to the crime branch.
SP (crime) Manoj Kumar Meena said, “An untraced report was filed in the month of January. We mentioned in the report that despite all the best possible efforts, assailants were not traced. We are yet to receive any communication from the district courts-43 in connection with the untraced report.”
The postmortem report of Neha had revealed head injuries but the forensic examination of her clothes traced the semen marks, which were sent to CFSL, Sector 36, for further investigation. In the murder investigation, the Chandigarh Police had faced criticism for failing to preserve the scene of crime as heavy rain on the night of murder washed away all the vital clues, including bloodstains.
Sources said the narco analysis test of four friends of Neha — one woman and three men — was conducted at CFSL Gandhinagar but negative results came. Even DNA samples of two of her friends were taken but negative results came. Besides these efforts, hundreds of drug addicts, habitual persons arrested in rape cases were interrogated but all in vain.”
A thumb impression of the person, who had sold the cell phone at the shop in Colony Number 5, was sent for examination to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) for matching it with fingerprints of criminals arrested nationwide. But the police had received negative response. Colony Number 5 has been demolished since.
The post-mortem report specified injuries to her private parts but could not confirm rape. However, in 2013, the CFSL report confirmed that Neha was raped before she was murdered.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines