Immediately after Sheena Bora’s murder and subsequent disposal of her body on April 24, 2012, key accused Indrani Mukerjea allegedly threatened her then driver Shyamvar Rai, who has now turned approver, saying “it won’t be good” for him if he disclosed the incident.
In his confessional statement, which was unsealed by the special CBI court following a Bombay High Court directive, Rai has submitted that Indrani had ‘implicated’ him in an arms case by planting a gun on him soon after Sheena’s murder.The petition seeking copy of Rai’s confessional statement was filed by Indrani’s former husband Sanjeev Khanna through his lawyer Shreyansh Mithare.
“Kisi se kuch kahna nahi, nahi to tumhara bhi thik nahi hoga. (Don’t tell anything to anybody (about the murder) or else it won’t be good for you,” Rai stated quoting Indrani.
Rai’s arrest by Khar police here under Arms Act in August 2015 had blown the lid off the murder. The trial court recently allowed him to turn approver in the murder case and become a prosecution witness.
According to prosecution, 24-year-old Sheena was murdered on April 24, 2012. Indrani, Khanna and Rai had allegedly strangled Sheena, Indrani’s daughter from an earlier relationship, inside a car. Her body was later found in a forest in Raigad. The crime, which came to light last year, is allegedly linked to certain financial dealings.
In his confession recorded last year by a magistrate, Rai had said that Indrani gave him a parcel and asked him to keep it carefully. “After the murder, Indrani gave me a parcel and asked me to keep it carefully. Later Indrani’s secretary Kajal gave me advance salary of three months and asked me to leave the job”, Rai stated. He said that when he opened the parcel, he found that it contained a a country-made pistol. Rai said he failed to dispose of the gun on two occasions as he developed cold feet. He said he was arrested when he tried to get rid of the gun for third time. About his arrest in August last year, Rai said when he was dumping the gun he suddenly saw some cops around and tried to flee. However, police stopped him and the gun was found on him. “Later they took me to the police chowky where I narrated the incident (about Sheena Bora case),” he said.
Rai said that in March 2012, a month before Sheena’s murder, Kajal had told him that Indrani asked her to open a Skype account for him as she wanted to speak to him (Rai). “Indrani told me that you are my trusted servant. I want to talk to you. You don’t reveal anything to anybody. Then she said she will take care of my children’s school as well as family’s medical expenses and promised me to make my job permanent”, Rai stated.
According to Rai, Indrani told him that her son Mikail and daughter Sheena are maligning her by addressing her as their mother. She also told him that she is locked in a property dispute with her children.
“Sheena has an affair with Rahul (son of former media baron and Indrani’s current husband Peter Mukerjea who is also arrested in the case) so I want to kill Sheena and Mikail. You don’t worry…your job is of a driver. Another person from Kolkata will do the job (murder)”, Rai said quoting Indrani.
He stated that Indrani later came to Mumbai and asked him to tell Mikhail to come to the city. “She asked me to tell Mikail that she (Indrani) has a lot of wealth and if he comes to Mumbai then they (Rai and Mikail) both can have lot of fun”, Rai said. “I followed Indrani’s instructions but Mikail refused to come”, Rai said in his confession which runs into 14 pages.
He stated that Indrani left Mumbai after some days before handing him over a doctor’s prescription. Rai said Indrani told him that she would let him know later about what to do with the prescription. As per Rai, Indrani again contacted him on Skype and directed him to collect a parcel from a person coming from Kolkata. She also told him to buy six bottles of the prescribed medicine and contact her after reaching Delhi. “When I reached Delhi, Indrani told me that the person to whom the medicines have to be handed over could not be contacted and hence asked me to come back to Mumbai”, Rai claimed. He said that Indrani later instructed him to go to Kolkata with the medicines and hand them over to a person at the airport there.
“On April 22, 2012, Indrani told me to hire a car and go to Lonavala taking old route and later come back to Mumbai via Khandla and Khopoli. She asked me to park the vehicle at her residence (Marlow building at Worli)”, Rai stated. Next day, I was told to pick up Indrani from airport and we reached home. He said Indrani asked him to take her to Lonavala through the same route on that day. “Upon reaching there, Indrai asked me to purchase a 20-litre petrol can. When we reached Khandala she ventured out of the vehicle and scouted some places, saying it is perfect for Mikail. “Then she called Mikhail and spoke to him over phone. After that when we reached Khopoli she asked me to take Pen route, did the same thing, and remarked that it was a nice place for Sheena. Remember these places we have to come back tomorrow (April 24, 2012)”, Rai said.
He claimed that on April 24, Indrani first visited a medical store, then a wine shop and handed him over a packet. “She told me that she will return after going to a parlour,” he stated.
Rai stated the packet contained a vodka bottle, two bottles of mineral water, six bottles of medicines and a liquor bottle along with hand gloves. He further stated that Indrani later mixed the medicines in water and liquor bottles.
“On that day, Indrani left her home for suburban Bandra and picked up (Sanjeev) Khanna and Sheena from outside National College. She gave Sheena one of the water bottles and after some time when I saw from the rear mirror the girl had dozed off.
“After a while, Indrani told me to park the vehicle roadside and asked Khanna (who was sitting alongside Rai on front seat) to shift to back seat”, Rai stated, adding Indani also asked him to come to back seat and gag Sheena.
“I saw Khanna grabbing Sheena by her hair and Indrani strangulating her after sitting on her lap. When I gagged her, Sheena bit my finger and it began to bleed. However, later she dropped down on the seat”, Rai stated.
Rai said that Indrani told him that Sheena now “got a three-bedroom flat”. As per Rai, Indrani also told him that since Rahul was continuously calling on Sheena’s mobile phone, she (Indrani) would send him a message (from Sheena’s phone) “to shut him up”.
“Indrani and Khanna stuffed Sheena’s body into a bag and asked me to keep it in garage”, Rai stated. He said when they returned to Indrani’s house, he saw Mikail sitting there and having drinks. “Indrani told me that even after drinking so much liquor, Mikail has still not lost his senses. At this, Khanna said that Mikail can be taken care of later as there would be a problem in carrying two bodies”, Rai stated.
He disclosed that Indrani called him in early hours of April 25 and told him to take out the bag (containing Sheena’s body) from the garage. He said Indrani also asked him to keep the petrol can in the car dickey.
“Indrani and Khanna then made Sheena’s body sit on the back seat. I was driving the car with Khanna by my side and Indrani sitting next to the body. Indrani asked me to drive towards Pen. Khanna purchased 10 litre petrol on the way and by that time Indrani was busy applying makeup to Sheena”, Rai stated.
At Pen, Indrani asked Rai to stop the car at the location chosen by them to dispose of Sheena’s body. “Khanna and Indrani pulled Sheena out of car and I helped them. We placed her near a bush in the forest. Indrani covered the body with a sari and also threw the gloves on her. In the meantime, Khanna poured petrol on the body and Indrani set it on fire”, Rai claimed.
CBI had filed a chargesheet against Indrani, Khanna and Rai for murdering Sheena and disposing of her body, on November 19 last year.
As per the chargesheet filed by CBI against Peter in February this year, Sheena was killed as her relationship with Rahul was disapproved by the former media baron and Indrani.
Since her arrest, Indrani has been lodged in a women’s jail in Byculla in South Mumbai, While Peter, arrested last November on charges of being part of the murder conspiracy, and Khanna are in Arthur Road jail in the city.