A mattress recovered from the pit,in which six skeletons were found at Laila Khans Igatpuri farmhouse,suggests that one or more victims might have been killed in a separate scuffle with accused Pervez Tak and Shakir Hussain on the first floor,sources said.
The Crime Branch had earlier said that following a late-night argument on July 8,Pervez and Lailas mother Shelina had come down from their first floor room,following which he delivered a fatal blow with an iron rod. Seeing Shelinas condition,the other five victims then got into a scuffle with Pervez and Shakir,the police had said.
The mattress found in the trench may have been used on the first floor. In his statement,Pervez had often mentioned that all family members were on the ground floor. However,we now have reason to believe that one or more persons could have been killed on the first floor, said an officer,who did not wish to be named.
The Crime Branch also found a bank locker in Lailas name in the city,sources said. We will go through the contents of the locker to see if anything is missing. That will help us understand what the motive could have been, said the officer. The police have not ruled out property as the motive. We need clinching evidence and are trying to get that.
On Monday,a team of Crime Branch officers and forensic experts visited Lailas Oshiwara flat to secure forensic evidence against the accused. Pervez allegedly told the police that following the murders,he had returned to the Oshiwara flat and cleaned it out.
Forensic teams collected traces of fingerprints from a cupboard and locker,which will be analysed for a match with Pervezs to corroborate what he had told the investigators. The fingerprints will then be used as evidence. We are also searching for papers related to the family properties, said an officer.
A Crime Branch team will also return to the Igatpuri farmhouse on Tuesday for a final sweep of the premises for more evidence. It will also enquire with shopkeepers on the route from Mumbai to Kasara to ascertain whether the two accused sold any jewellery to them.
Investigators have also asked for superimposition techniques to be used to help identify the skeletons. We have also taken DNA samples of close relatives of the family to help ascertain if the remains belonged to them, said Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Himanshu Roy.
Sources said they now suspect that Shakir could be hiding somewhere in Kashmir. We have information to suggest that Shakir is in Kashmir. Teams are on the lookout for him, said an officer.