Month on, police await forensic, DNA reports in Shraddha Walkar murder case

It has been a month since the grisly murder of 27-year-old Shraddha Walkar unfolded, police are yet to receive the forensic and DNA reports related to the case.

The gory details about Walkar’s murder shook the entire nation last month after the Delhi Police arrested her live-in partner Aaftab Amin Poonawala on November 12.

During interrogation, Poonawala, 28, confessed to killing Walkar and chopping her body parts into 35 pieces and disposing them of in various parts of the national capital, police had said.

Following his confession, police scanned through various forest areas and even a pond in Madangir was emptied to look for Walkar’s missing body parts.

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Though police have recovered more than 13 body parts, suspected to be that of Walkar, from forest areas of Mehrauli and Gurugram, only a DNA analysis will ascertain that they belonged to the victim.

“The investigation is still on. We are yet to receive the DNA and forensic reports related to the case,” a senior police officer said on Monday.

The case, which had the investigators on tenterhooks, also gave fodder to gossip mills that were churning out various salacious stories, with police denying them outrightly.

There was an outrage over the case with the lawyers protesting against Poonawala following which he was produced in the court through video conference. Some fringe groups also tried to give it an angle of ‘Love Jihad’.

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While there were questions abound like ‘what triggered Walkar’s killing?’ and ‘why did not she speak about the abuse being inflicted on her by Poonawala?’, the answers were few.

Walkar’s friends from Mumbai spoke about how she had been a victim of abuse ever since she started dating Poonawala in 2018. Despite taking the decision to leave him in the past, she forgave him whenever he apologised, her friends revealed to police.

The couple had met on a dating app and police have learnt that even after killing her, Poonawala’s profile on the app was active and was still chatting with several women. The accused was also in relationship with a woman, who was also quizzed by police.

Several sessions of polygraph test were conducted on Poonawala which was followed by the narco analysis test held at Baba Saheb Ambedkar hospital by experts of Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL), Rohini.

According to investigating officers, the statements that Poonawala gave in his polygraph and narco analysis tests and during the police interrogation were the same.

However, a senior FSL official said, “Final reports of both polygraph and narco analysis test are still awaited.”

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Besides, police are yet to recover Walkar’s mobile phone which the accused allegedly threw somewhere.

Currently, Poonawala is lodged in Tihar Jail and has also been provided Paul Theroux’s railway odyssey ‘The Great Railway Bazaar’ following his request.

The court on November 26 sent him to judicial custody for 13 days. On Friday, it extended by 14 days the judicial custody of Poonawala till December 23.

Poonawala allegedly strangled Walkar on May 18 and sawed her body into 35 pieces and kept them in a 300-litre fridge for almost three weeks at his residence in south Delhi’s Mehrauli before dumping them across the city over several days.

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