By Arun Pratap Singh
Dehradun, 3 Oct: ADG, Laws & Order, and newly nominated spokesperson of Uttarakhand Police, V Murugesan, today, briefed the media on progress in the investigation of the Ankita murder case. He said that the SIT has been able to gather some concrete evidence in the case from the resort as well as the crime spot. It has also gathered substantial information from witnesses who had been questioned in the case so far. The statements of four crucial witnesses have been recorded in the court to ensure that the witnesses do not retract from their statements at a later stage.
He added that during their interrogation over the 3 day remand obtained by the SIT, the accused had admitted to the murder. Efforts are underway to build a tight case to ensure that the accused are proven guilty in the court and given life imprisonment or higher punishment.
The ADG further said that the SIT has identified those who had booked the resort before and after the incident. The SIT is in the process to question them and record their statements as well. Statements of some of them have already been recorded.
V Murugesan said bookings for the resort were done through a website and WhatsApp at the resort. He added that a birthday party was also booked to be held in the first week of October. The booking had been done from Delhi. The statement of those who had made the booking had also been recorded. The ADG said that during the remand, a lot of information had been gathered from the accused. The accused had admitted that they have killed Ankita and they would be again taken on remand when required.
V Murugesan claimed that the main purpose of killing Ankita Bhandari was that Pulkit Arya was pressurising her to do ‘immoral work’ at the resort. In the name of immoral work, ‘special service’ was being given to some VIP guest, for which Pulkit had also asked Ankita Bhandari to cooperate. Ankita had categorically refused to do so and additionally she had also informed her friend Pushp about this. According to Murugesan, Pulkit had become scared that Ankita Bhandari was going to leave the job and she would expose all the immoral things happening at the resort. For this reason, Pulkit, along with his two managers Saurabh Bhaskar and Ankit Gupta, “removed” Ankita from their path to protect their secret. The SIT has got strong evidence regarding this, on the basis of which it could be proven that pressure had been applied on Ankita to do wrong. Apart from this, to substantiate these allegations, the statements of four important witnesses had been recorded in the court under Section 164.
In response to a question, the ADG claimed that action could be taken against the guests in case any indication or clue regarding their wrongdoing is found in the course of future investigation as the SIT investigation is still underway.
Meanwhile, according to sources, the SIT investigation has indicated that Pulkit was promoting immoral acts with a view to running the resort for profit as the resort was allegedly running in loss and Pulkit Arya was not even paying salary to his employees. This had led to many of the employees leaving the job within two months of joining. Sources claimed further that Ankita had also made up her mind to leave.
When the SIT took the three accused on police remand, a list of 400 questions was prepared for them. The police not only interrogated the accused by sitting face to face in turn, but also reinforced them by recreating the crime scene.
A big party was to be held in October: The SIT has got information that in October, a big party was to be organised inside the resort. This party was booked by someone from Delhi. The SIT has also questioned the people who booked the party. Along with this, the SIT has also questioned some guests already staying in the resort, whose statements will be considered as testimony in the charge sheet.