Police believe DPS teacher was killer's target

Police believe DPS teacher was killer's target

Priyanka Gupta, a teacher at Delhi Public School (South), was found murdered in her Venkateshwara Layout residence on Bannerghatta Road when her husband, who works for Infosys’ HR department, was believed to have been out for a jog around 5:45 am. Her body was found with its throat slit, but to ensure that she was dead, the killer or killers brutally “dug” up her throat with a kitchen knife.

There were other injury marks on Priyanka’s body which was found in a sitting position in the living room sofa. Her husband, Satish, reportedly found the body after rushing home following a call he received from her. According to his statement to the police, Priayanka had called him to inform about some newspaper agents trying to sell a subscription.

But the police are now fairly certain of the motive which, according to investigations so far, point to elimination of the woman. Working on a set of circumstantial evidence and after questioning Satish, sleuths are wondering why the killer or killers brought along three sets of ropes — two nylon and another cotton — and a kitchen knife.

Usually, habitual thieves carry their “tools” that come in handy to break open locks, doors and almirahs. What helped the police eliminate altogether “murder for gain” as a motive was that neither was the house ransacked nor did they find tell-tale evidence of locks and almirahs being tampered with. Working on the theory that Priyanka was the target, the police said she was first strangled to death and then a knife was used to slit her throat before it was “dug” up in a gruesome manner to ensure a brutal and gory end.

“The killer or killers used a rope to strangulate Priyanka who did not have any room to resist the initial attack. As her body went limp, it was dragged to the sofa where her hands were tied and the throat slit open,” said a police source. Since Tuesday, the police have been closely examining Satish’s statement.

Satish initially claimed that he had withdrawn about Rs 2 lakh in cash from two private bank ATMs — one in JP Nagar and other at the Infosys campus. However, on verifying, the police found no such transaction.

It was sometime in the last week of July that Satish had issued a self cheque for Rs 50,000 and his bank balance did not tally with the figure mentioned in his statement.
He told the police that he had kept the cash to purchase a second hand car.

No conclusions

While the police believe that there are discrepancies in Satish’s account, they are not prepared yet to jump to conclusions.

However, evidence gathered from the crime scene suggest that the killer or killers left behind red herrings to deflect the police’s attention.

The police suspect that the killer or killers were hired to eliminate Priyanka. Besides a packet of milk and a loaf of bread, some of the other items that have drawn the attention of the police are a jerkin, a pair of gloves, shoes and the ropes.

Also, neither did the assailant(s) take away the ornaments on Priyanka’s person nor was any cash found missing.

The police are examining one of Priyanka’s colleagues and trying to ascertain whether she and Satish had any personal problems.

The police believe that Priyanka may have confided to her colleague issues that may have caused misunderstanding between the husband and wife.

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