Jealous over nephew’s friendship with woman, HR manager buries him, plants saplings

Delhi police on Thursday said they arrested a 37-year-old man who allegedly killed his nephew and buried him in the balcony of his rented house in southwest Delhi’s Dabri nearly three years ago.

The accused Bijay Kumar Maharana, a human resources manager with an engineering firm, was arrested from Hyderabad on Sunday. Police believe jealousy may have been the motive behind the crime.

Additional deputy commissioner of police Rajendra Singh Sagar said the skeletal remains of the victim, 26-year-old Jai Prakash Maharana, were discovered last October.

“Our team reached the building in Chanakya Place 1, at 25 Foota Road and found that the boundary wall of the balcony on the third floor of the house had been demolished for renovation. Labourers and house owner said human remains were visible from under the soil. The skeleton was found wrapped in a blue jacket and a green shirt which had been covered using a bed sheet, a blanket and a mattress,” Sagar said.

In 2015, the house owner had rented the place out to Bijay who shared it with his nephew .

“The landlord told us that in February 2016, Bijay informed him that his nephew had gone out with his friends but did not return. He said Bijay got a missing complaint registered on February 12, 2016. The landlord also said that at around the same time, Bijay had sought permission to plant flowers in the balcony. He said Bijay got layers of soil piled in the balcony and planted saplings,” the officer said.

Two months later, Bijay vacated the flat.

“The landlord said some other people also lived in that house on rent until October 8 last year when he demolished the wall of the balcony to replace it with a see-through iron grille, and found the skeleton,” said Sagar. While investigating the murder, police said they could not find Bijay.

“His whereabouts were not even known to his family members. His phone was switched off and he had quit the job he had then. He had withdrawn money from all his bank accounts and had made no transactions thereafter,” the additional DCP said.

In December, police received a tip-off that Bijay was possibly in Vishakhapatnam or Hyderabad. He was arrested on January 6 and was brought to Delhi on transit remand. During questioning, Bijay allegedly told police about a woman friend of his, who got friendly with Jai too.

“The woman used to meet Bijay at his flat. Bijay said he did not like Jai and the woman talking to each other over phone and text messages. During the early hours on February 7, around 2 am, Bijay smashed Jai’s head with the motor of a ceiling fan,” Sagar said.

Bijay then allegedly buried the body in the balcony. “Two days later Jai’s mother called Bijay to inquire about Jai as her calls had gone unanswered. He told her that Jai went out to party with friends but did not return. He said she forced him to lodge a missing complaint,” said Sagar. “Two months after the police complaint Bijay vacated the flat and shifted to Nangloi for a while before moving to Hyderabad.”

Bijay hails from Odisha and shifted to Delhi to work at a call centre in Noida.

First Published: Jan 11, 2019 08:13 IST

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