Retd army doc chops wife’s body into small pieces,arrested

Chopped body into small pieces and stuffed them in tiffin boxes; tells police she committed suicide

Written by Debabrata Mohanty | Bhubaneswar | Published: June 23, 2013 1:12:11 am

Police have arrested a 71-year-old retired army doctor,who allegedly killed his 61-year-old wife and chopped her body into small pieces before stashing them in tiffin carriers over the past three weeks.

Lt Col (retd) Dr Somnath Parida was arrested by the police Friday night from his posh IRC Village residence in Bhubaneswar after his wife’s relatives and her son,who is in the US,complained to the police about her mysterious disappearance some time back. When the police arrived at Parida’s residence,a stench led them to question him.

The police said that after some tough questioning Parida revealed that he had been dismembering his wife’s body since June 3 and stuffing them in 22 small tiffin containers. “Using a surgeon’s scalpel,scissor,saw and a kitchen knife,he would meticuloulsy cut the flesh into six inches and then poured phenyle on it to kill the stench. He then stored the tiffin carriers in two Army trunks,” said Bhubaneswar DCP Nitinjeet Singh.

“All throughout,he would go on with his ghastly work even as his gardener would come to work early morning every day. During interrogation,he came out as a very calm person,but kept on with his theory that his wife committed suicide,” he said.

The police have seized a chopper,knife and two cutters from Parida’s house.

After retirement in 1992,Parida worked as a consultant with several organisations including WHO. He is now working in the clinic of a city-based hospital. The doctor and his wife reportedly had a long history of marital discord,but they never approached the police or court. The doctor’s daughter,who lived in Abu Dhabi,also did not get along with her father.

Though the police are yet to know the actual reason that led to Parida killing his wife,the accused kept on saying his wife committed suicide. “He told us that his wife committed suicide by banging her head. He then told us that his wife wanted to be cremated on the day of Shirdi Sai Baba’s birth anniversary on September 27 and that is why he wanted to preserve the body,” said the DCP. “He had surgically dismembered almost all the parts except the thigh,which proved to be a difficult task for him. So two days ago he got a hacksaw from a local market. He was trying his best to remove all traces of murder.”

The police said the couple lived a secluded life,shunning social functions. “While the doctor went to the clinic between 10 am to 4 pm every day,he would not meet anyone at his house after 6 pm. He would wake up at 3 am every day. After he killed his wife,he packed off the maid saying she needn’t come,” said a police officer. “He gave an impression to everyone around that his wife has actually gone to Abu Dhabi to see their daughter.”

Relatives became suspicious when Parida’s wife did not respond to phone calls of her son from the US. Her cellphone was switched off and Parida did not take his son’s calls either. Left with no option,the son called his maternal uncle,who then sent his son to visit the couple. When the boy visited Parida,he managed to fend him off. But he returned with the police.

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