A 62-year-old businessman and his three employees were found murdered under mysterious circumstances at his house in Vivek Vihar

A 62-year-old businessman and his three employees were found murdered under mysterious circumstances at his house in Vivek Vihar on Monday morning. According to eyewitnesses, the limbs of all four victims were tied and their mouths taped.

The victims have been identified as Bajrang Lal Bokadia, driver Vinod Dubey (40), cook Bhola Singh (30) and domestic help Anand (18). Their bodies were purportedly spotted by one Subhash Sethia.

Mr. Sethia, the general secretary of the Jain Shwetambar Terapanthi Sabha, of which the Bokadia’s family too was a follower, said he had gone to the house to check whether the food to be served to some Jain sadhus — who come to the area during this time of the year and stay at the nearby Oswal Bhawan — was ready.

“I went inside from the main gate around 7.45 a.m. All the doors of Bokadia’s single storey house were open. I went to his bedroom using the side entrance and found him tied to a chair and the three others, whose limbs were also tied. Their mouths had been sealed with tape and there were spots of dried blood in the room. The entire house was ransacked,” said Mr. Sethia, who added that he last met Bokadia on Sunday.

According to the police, all four men were beaten and had bruises and injury marks all over their bodies.

“We are waiting for the post-mortem reports to ascertain the exact cause of their deaths, but we suspect that Bokadia was strangled and the throats of the other three were slit. The motive, from what is available to us now, seems robbery,” said a police source. It is learnt that cash and valuables are missing from the house.

While the police have not ruled out personal or business rivalry behind the murders, neighbours said given his amicable nature and the fact that he was not actively involved in business these days, it was unlikely that Bokadia had any rivals or enemies.

Bokadia, who runs a plastic and rubber factory in North-East Delhi, lived with his wife Pushpa. Both his children are married and settled in Mumbai. Pushpa had gone to attend a religious function at their native place Sujangarh in Rajasthan. Among the other victims, Bhola and Anand lived in the house, while Vinod lived in a rented accommodation near by.

The police have spoken to another domestic help Gattu, who was not present at the time of the incident, but had visited Bokadia’s house on Sunday where he met an unknown woman.

They suspect that she was with the attackers, whose modus operandi is similar to the one employed by Bangladeshi gangs active in the area, said the source. The lock of the door leading to the room is learnt to have been broken with a drilling machine.

Alleging apathy and inaction by the police, area residents protested outside Bokadia’s house and even blocked the road close to it. They raised slogans against the police and demanded that the accused be arrested soon. Some even demanded the suspension of the area Station House Officer.

Joining the protest was Delhi Bharatiya Janata Party leader Vijay Goel. Later in the day, the case was transferred to the Delhi Police Crime Branch.

Bokadia’s children and wife reached Delhi by evening.

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