Mumbai Guard killed Pallavi after she bravely resisted attempt to rape: Cops

A file photo of Pallavi Purkayastha.

Blinded by lust, the security guard at the residential complex lawyer Pallavi Purkayastha lived in, fatally stabbed her after she bravely resisted his attempt to rape, police said on Friday, claiming to have cracked the sensational murder.

Pallavi (25), daughter of IAS officer Atanu

Purkayastha, joint secretary in the agriculture ministry, was found lying in a pool of blood in her 16th floor apartment at the upscale Himalayan Heights in Wadala by her live-in partner Avik Sengupta on Thursday morning. Sajjad Ahmed Mughal (22), a native of Uri in Baramulla district of Jammu and Kashmir, opened Pallavi's flat with stolen keys, tried to force himself on her, and brutally stabbed her to death when faced with stiff resistance, Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Himanshu Roy told reporters in Mumbai.
"It is the perversion of the highest order, heinous kind of perversion which deserves nothing but death sentence," Roy said when asked about the motive of the murder.
Giving details of the incident, he said, on the fateful night of August 8, Pallavi, who worked as a legal advisor with filmmaker Farhan Akhtar's firm Excel Entertainment Pvt. Ltd, returned to her rented flat at 11pm.
Finding that there was no electricity, she texted Sengupta, her senior at Indian Law School at Pune, who lived with her. Sengupta advised her to call an electrician, who came and set things right.
After some time, power was gone again. She called the electrician who was accompanied by Mughal. As the attention of the victim and electrician was focused on fixing the problem, Mughal stole the keys to the flat. The problem was fixed and Purkayastha retired to her bedroom after switching off the high-volt appliances, as advised by the electrician to avoid tripping.
Roy said Mughal had told his interrogators that he had "manipulated" the electric meter of the flat located on the ground floor which led to a power cut for the second time.
After entering the flat, Mughal sneaked into the bedroom of the victim and tried to force himself on her. A scuffle ensued and Pallavi, a former national-level swimming champion, put up stiff resistance. Mughal then stabbed her and fled the scene after concealing the murder weapon--a knife, under a shoe rack on the third floor.
He jumped over the fence to escape the notice of fellow watchmen but was apprehended by police near Mumbai Central Railway station before he could board a train to Jammu and Kashmir, Roy said.
He said when Sengupta returned to the flat around 5 am, he saw the door ajar and a badly wounded Purkayastha lying in a pool of blood. Sengupta tried to revive her but failed, Roy said, adding the neighbours were informed and security supervisor and police called.
On arrival, police found no signs of a forced entry and was told that being a "cautious" girl by nature, she would not have left the door ajar while going to sleep.
During the investigations, police said it noticed injuries on the hand of Mughal, who on sustained interrogation, confessed to the crime.
To corroborate the truth, the police will match the clump of hair found in the hand of the victim with the DNA of Mughal, Roy said.
Describing the murder as a "premedidated kind of an act", the officer said, "apparently he was planning it for quite some time".
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