‘Aftab cut Shraddha’s body into 17 pieces, kept shifting it between fridge and kitchen cabinets’

In its 6,629-page chargesheet, Delhi Police said that Mehrauli murder accused Aftab Poonawalla used to have arguments with his live-in partner Shraddha Walker over expenses in Delhi and the women he was involved with

February 08, 2023 01:51 am | Updated February 09, 2023 04:18 pm IST - New Delhi

File image of Aftab Poonawala, accused of killing his partner Shraddha Walker.

File image of Aftab Poonawala, accused of killing his partner Shraddha Walker. | Photo Credit: PTI

Aftab Poonawalla, accused of killing his live-in partner Shraddha Walkar, allegedly shifted her body parts between the refrigerator and kitchen cabinets each time a woman he met on a dating app visited his rented house, Delhi Police has said in its chargesheet.

Aftab, 28, allegedly strangled Shraddha, 26, on May 18 last year and sawed her body into several pieces which he kept in a fridge for almost three weeks at his Chhatarpur Pahari house, before disposing of them over several days. The crime came to light in November 2022 when the police interrogated the accused following a missing complaint filed by Shraddha’s father in Mumbai.

Also Read | Bones and hair strands recovered from Mehrauli forest match Shraddha Walker’s DNA: Delhi Police

Delhi’s Saket court on Tuesday took cognisance of the 6,629-page chargesheet filed by Delhi Police against Aftab on January 24, and listed the matter for hearing on February 21.

The accused was arrested on November 12 after he couldn’t explain a transaction of ₹54,000 from Shraddha’s bank account to his on May 18, and a transaction of ₹6,000 from his bank account to Shraddha’s on June 7, the chargesheet said.

After killing Shraddha, Aftab came in contact with a woman on May 24 on Bumble. Soon they became friends and she visited his flat for the first time on May 25. Aftab also gifted her a silver ring that he had removed from Shraddha’s body after killing her. This ring was recovered from the woman.

Also Read | ‘Aftab has not shown any regret since his arrest’

The chargesheet said the woman would often stay at his accommodation and he would clean the refrigerator that he bought on May 19. According to the chargesheet, the body was dismembered into 17 pieces, which he stored in a refrigerator that he bought on May 19. When the woman visited his rented accommodation, he would shift the body parts. The chargesheet said that the woman would often stay at his accommodation and he would clean the refrigerator. Once she left, he would again put the body parts back in the fridge, Delhi Police said in the chargesheet.

The blood stains found on the upper shelf of the wooden cabinet matched with Shraddha’s father, Vikas Walker’s DNA, and the blood recovered from the lower shelf matched with Aftab and Shraddha.

There was heavy security in the court on Tuesday before the closed-door hearing by Metropolitan Magistrate Aviral Shukla. The police combed the premises with a dog squad and kept the media out.

After strangulating Shraddha in the evening, he closed the main door of the house and went to purchase a saw, three blades, a hammer and plastic clip. On the same day, he cut her wrists and placed them in a polythene. It was then kept in the kitchen’s lower cabinet, according to the chargesheet.

Over the next four to five days, I cut the dead body into 17 pieces (three pieces of each hand (six pieces), three pieces of each leg (six pieces), head, torso, two pieces of pelvic, and thumb,” the chargesheet quoted Aftab’s disclosure statement.

He admitted to lying about Shraddha’s phone being lost in a train, he disclosed. “I threw away her phone, debit and credit cards, and documents in Bhayander Creek [Mumbai] after damaging them as I was aware of its [the creek’s] depth since I did my schooling there,” the chargesheet said, quoting Aftab.

“Shraddha was living with Aftab under constant fear of getting killed by Aftab or beaten badly on petty issues. Aftab used to beat her mercilessly and at times used to strangulate her almost to death. Shraddha had no support system as she was living with Aftab against the will of her father and brother. Therefore, she was not in contact with her family. At times she used to share her tragic life with her school friend Laxumanun Nadar,” the chargesheet said.

Chargesheet revealed that Aftab was trying to create an alibi that Shraddha had left him. “He had already murdered Shraddha and was chatting with a Bumble friend, by using both [Aftab’s and Shraddha’s] phones and also impersonated Shraddha. Though he had stated that Shraddha had moved out, the location of Shraddha’s phone was still alongside Aftab’s, which is also confirmed by the GPS locations of Shraddha’s Bumble account,” the chargesheet said.

The police have attached the parallel locations of mobile phones of both Aftab and Shraddha after May 18. They were able to establish that Shraddha’s phone was in Aftab’s possession, according to the chargesheet.

The two had several arguments pertaining to expenses in Delhi and women Aftab was involved with. He had girlfriends “all the way from Delhi to Dubai,” the chargesheet said.

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