Moments after stabbing a woman in front of her daughter, a man surrendered himself at the Borivali police station Saturday evening and handed over the knife used in the crime.
Accused Rajesh Rathod (51) allegedly murdered Vinita Menon (49) outside her home over an alleged property dispute. The incident took place at Eksar Nilkamal, a housing society in Borivali (West). Both lived in the same society. While single mother Vinita worked as a clerk in a bank in Borivali, Rathod is believed to be an unemployed and lived alone, according to police.
Around 6 pm Saturday, Rathod stabbed the woman twice in her stomach and once on her thigh. She was rushed to Shatabdi Hospital in Kandivali where she was declared dead on arrival around 7.55 pm.
“The victim, after buying vegetables and fruits, was returning home along with her 25-year-old daughter Pooja. They found Rathod outside their flat in ‘A’ wing, though he lived in the neighbouring wing,” said a police officer.
The two allegedly had a bitter argument over some tenancy issues. Vinita and her daughter had been living on rent in the ‘disputed’ house on third floor for the last three years.
“Preliminary probe reveals that Rathod’s brother had in 2005 sold that house, in which the Menons lived, to a third person who further rented it out to Vinita in 2013. Though the flat was not owned by Rathod or his brother any more, the former continued to argue with Vinita, regularly demanding that she vacate the flat as her brother was deceived into selling it. This time, the quarrel unfortunately escalated to a physical level,” said an officer. A short while after the argument, said the police, Rathod attacked Vinita with a “sharp, 8-inch knife”. “It was not a kitchen knife. We believe the murder was premeditated because Rathod was prepared with a knife like that. We are in the process of recording other society members’ statements,” said another police officer. Even as the police reached the murder spot and took the victim to hospital, Rathod walked into the Borivali police station with the blood-stained knife and surrendered. He has been arrested on charges of murder.
Though doctors at Bhagwati hospital, who conducted the postmortem have reserved the final cause of death, they believe that multiple injuries to the
victim’s abdomen proved to be fatal.