Serial killer on the loose in Bengaluru? Cops say no, link 3rd woman’s murder to ‘family dispute’

Serial killer on the loose in Bengaluru? Cops say no, link 3rd woman’s murder to ‘family dispute’

Three cases of bodies of women in their 30s being found in and around railway stations in Bengaluru are ‘isolated incidents’, say police.

Woman's body was found inside drum at SMVT Monday | Twitter @ANI

Woman's body was found inside drum at SMVT Monday | Twitter @ANI

Bengaluru: Alarmed about a foul smell emanating from a closed plastic drum, officials of the Railway Protection Force (RPF) rushed to the Sir M. Visvesvaraya Terminal (SMVT) in east Bengaluru’s Byappanahalli Monday night. As they opened the lid, their senses came under assault by the sight of a body stuffed inside the seemingly innocuous blue drum.

This was the third case of a body of a woman in her 30s being dumped in and around a railway station in Bengaluru since last December. But senior officers of the railway police in Bengaluru say these were isolated incidents and not the handiwork of a ‘serial killer’ as was being suggested by some media outlets, causing panic among locals.

“This is an isolated case of a family dispute. There is no connection between the Yeshwantpur murder case or the murder case detected in Byappanahalli last year. There is no serial killer issue going on. I would like to clarify that there is no need to panic,” Dr Soumyalatha, Superintendent of Police (SP), Railways (Bengaluru), told reporters Thursday.

The officer added that the other two cases — one from January and another from December last year — were ‘isolated incidents’ and the motives for those crimes may not be the same as for the murder reported in Byappanahalli police station limits this week.

On 4 January, the decomposed body of an unidentified woman, believed to be in her 30s, was found in a plastic drum at Yeshwantpur railway station. According to reports, it was a sweeper who first alerted the police about it.

Less than a month earlier, in December last year, a woman’s body was reportedly found in a sack under a berth in an unreserved compartment of a short-distance train at the SMVT.

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‘Murdered by brother-in-law’: Bengaluru cops

According to the police, the body found at the SMVT Monday has no connection with the earlier cases. In this case, the police suspect that the victim was killed by her brother-in-law owing to “some unpleasantness within the family”.

In a press conference she held Thursday, Soumyalatha said the victim was married to one Afroz until last July when she divorced him and eloped with his distant cousin Intikhab, leading to tension within the family. She added Intikhab’s brother Nawab “had an issue with his marriage to this girl because he thought it had spoiled his brother’s life as it was his brother’s first marriage but a second one for her”.

While pretending to be on board with the victim’s marriage to Intikhab, Nawab invited the couple to his home in Bengaluru. But when they arrived at his home Sunday, they were accosted by eight men including Nawab who threatened Intikhab and sent him home by assuring him that no harm would befall his wife and that they would send her back to Bihar.

However, police suspect that soon after Intikhab left, the eight men strangled the woman before breaking her legs in order to stuff her body in a blue plastic drum to avoid suspicion. They then allegedly transported it to SMVT in Byappanahalli, a distance of about 11 km, where they abandoned it. The accused, police said, often used such plastic drums to transport clothes and other commodities between Bengaluru and Bihar. 

“So, he (Nawab) has, with criminal intention, conspired with seven others and called both of them (victim and Intikhab) intentionally on Sunday (to his home) and in a view that you know you (Intikhab) can show her (victim) Bengaluru and later they have killed her,” Soumyalatha said.

Bengaluru Police have so far arrested three of the eight accused in the case, while Nawab and four others are on the run.

(Edited by Amrtansh Arora)

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