A 22-year-old woman from Manchester, U.K., was found dead at her houseboat on Dal Lake here in the morning on Saturday.
Srinagar Senior Superintendent of Police Syed Ashiq Bukhari said that the young British tourist had been staying at New Beauty houseboat on Dal Lake since February last week. Police on Saturday received information about her death.
According to the SSP, the team of doctors that conducted the post-mortem examination on her body at Jawahar Lal Nehru Memorial Hospital of Rainawari observed as many as 45 marks of violence and wounds. The woman’s clothes were found torn.
“Doctors have taken samples and it would take them some time to ascertain whether the woman had been raped and killed. We have preserved the body at Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences Soura,” Mr. Bukhari told The Hindu.
The SSP said that Police Station Ram Munshi Bagh registered the First Information Report and flashed a radio signal to all the barriers and Police posts on Srinagar-Jammu highway to intercept and check all the outgoing foreigners. He said that immediately the only suspect in the case of the woman’s “possible rape and murder” was a Dutch national, Richard Calliper Dennis (43) who was staying in another room of the houseboat after his arrival on April 4 but was missing.
A police party intercepted a taxi carrying the male tourist from The Netherlands from Srinagar to Jammu, a mile short of Jawahar Tunnel on the 300 km-long highway. The taxi was seized and the “fleeing tourist” and the driver Ashok Kumar, a resident of Jammu, were detained.
Sub Divisional Police Officer Nehru Park Jeelani spoke to the woman’s parents in Manchester over telephone with the help of the British High Commission officials in New Delhi. Sources said that her parents would arrive in Srinagar in a few days to take custody of the body.
Police sources said Dennis admitted to the “murder” during sustained questioning.