'Happened in heat of moment': Poonawalla on Shraddha Walkar murder
In yet another significant development in the Shraddha Walkar murder case, Delhi's Saket District Court on Tuesday extended the accused Aftab Poonawalla's police custody for four more days. During the hearing, Poonawalla also claimed his actions were "not deliberate." His lawyer told the court, "Whatever happened...it was in the heat of the moment," and claimed his client had since "fully cooperated" with the police.
Why does this story matter?
- The Delhi Police arrested Aftab Amin Poonawalla on November 12 for murdering his live-in partner Shraddha Walkar on May 18.
- Reportedly, Poonawalla chopped Walkar's body into 35 pieces and disposed of them in Delhi's Mehrauli forest over several weeks.
- The accused remains in police custody, and the only proof of the case depends on Poonawalla's statements, as there are zero eyewitnesses of the murder.
Need polygraph test for Poonawalla: Delhi Police
In its latest application to the Saket court, the Delhi Police on Monday said Poonawalla was misleading the investigation agency. For a fair investigation, it sought a polygraph test. The Delhi Police said this test would allow the investigation team to ascertain whether Poonawalla's answers to police queries are correct. Last week, the court permitted the police to conduct a narcoanalysis test on him.
What is a polygraph test?
According to American Psychological Association (APA), polygraph tests can't completely verify the truthfulness of a criminal but may help prove whether or not an individual has committed a crime. A polygraph test measures and records numerous "physiological indicators" while an individual is being questioned. Meanwhile, narcoanalysis refers to chemical-based lie-detection testing that could produce material evidence and corroborate one's confessions.
Plea in Delhi HC for CBI to take over
Earlier on Monday, advocate Joshini Tuli filed a plea in the Delhi High Court, demanding the transfer of Walkar's murder case to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), citing the Delhi Police's "paucity of staff." She stated that, given the staffing deficiency, the investigation cannot be carried out efficiently. Tuli also claimed the cops had not even sealed certain important places about the case.
Poonawalla used to smoke cannabis: Police
Reportedly, Poonawalla told cops he was under the influence of drugs on the night of Walkar's murder. It is also learned that he used to smoke cannabis and was under its influence on the day he killed his live-in partner. The Times of India reported that Walkar criticized him over this issue regularly, and she perhaps did the same on May 18 as well.
What happened on day of murder?
On May 18, the couple allegedly got into a fight at their rented Chhattarpur Pahari flat in Delhi as Walkar wanted to fetch household items from their hometown Vasai, Maharashtra. In an attempt to restrain Walkar when she started shouting, the accused ended up strangling her to death. After the murder, Poonawalla also transferred Rs. 54,000 to himself from Walkar's bank account online.
Poonawalla's regular Mehrauli forest visits
After killing Walkar, Poonawalla reportedly chopped her body into 35 pieces using a saw and used room fresheners and potpourri to cover the corpse's stench. The accused reportedly started visiting Delhi's Mehrauli forest for the next 18-20 days to dispose of the body parts one by one. However, the clothes the couple was wearing on the day of the murder are still missing.