Nine days after Rohit Shekhar Tiwari (39), son of veteran Congress leader N D Tiwari, was found dead at his Defence Colony residence, the Crime Branch Wednesday arrested his wife Apoorva Shukla (35) for allegedly murdering him.
Additional CP (Crime) Rajiv Ranjan said: “Apoorva has confessed. It was not planned but there was ample bitterness between the two. They were headed towards a divorce. From day one, they had a turbulent and unhappy marriage. That night, they fought over Rohit drinking with a female relative, and Apoorva strangled him.”
On April 10, Rohit left for Uttarakhand to vote, with his mother Ujjwala (75), a former aide of his father’s and the aide’s wife. On April 15, the group drove back to Delhi around 10.30 pm.
“Rohit drank throughout the journey, and he and his wife fought over this. At 11 pm, he went to his room and came out when his mother Ujjwala came over for dinner. By midnight, Rohit returned to his room. Apoorva joined him around 12.30-12.45 am after watching TV downstairs,” said Ranjan.
According to police, the couple argued in Rohit’s room and she allegedly strangled and smothered him with her bare hands. She stayed in the room for some time before heading to her room, Ranjan said. When Ujjwala called Rohit the next day, Apoorva told her he was sleeping since he “was an insomniac and slept till late”. On April 16 afternoon, a maid found Rohit unresponsive with a bleeding nose. He was rushed to Max Hospital in Saket, where he was declared dead on arrival.
His body was sent to AIIMS for a post-mortem. Ranjan said the PM report stated that the “cause of death was asphyxiation by smothering and strangulation. The time of death was…two hours after his last meal”.
On Wednesday, Apoorva was produced at Saket district court, as police sought her three-day remand to reconstruct the crime scene and rule out the possibility of any other suspects.
Judge Charu Gupta said, “The accused is remanded to two-day police custody”.
Police are also probing claims by Ujjwala that Apoorva wanted Rohit’s property. “As per N D Tiwari’s will, nothing was in Apoorva’s name,” said Ranjan.
How the case unfolded
April 10: Rohit goes to Uttarakhand to vote
April 15: Back in Delhi
April 16: Emergency call to hospital in Saket after help finds Rohit unresponsive with a bleeding nose. Declared dead on arrival
April 18: Post-mortem points to ‘asphyxiation by strangling and smothering’
April 19-20: Apoorva and 2 helps questioned by Crime Branch
April 21: SIT conducts forensic exam of nails of Apoorva, 2 helps
April 22-23: Apoorva questioned
April 24: Apoorva arrested for murder