Mumbai, 30 June-2014, NDTV: Pallavi Purkayastha was killed in her own home in Mumbai, allegedly by the security guard of her apartment building.
Two years after the killing that jolted a city known to be safe for women, a court has found the guard, Sajjad Ahmed Pathan, guilty of assault and murder. He faces a life term or the death sentence.
The 25-year-old lawyer was murdered in her apartment in Wadala in central Mumbai on August 9, 2012.
Within 24 hours, the police homed in on Sajjad, the building’s guard, and arrested him before he could escape to his hometown in Jammu and Kashmir. What emerged was a chilling story of a woman attacked in the safety of her own home by a man she should have been able to trust.
The prosecution alleged that Sajjad was enraged after Ms Purkayastha told him off for staring at her.
On August 9, he repeatedly switched off power supply to her flat, knowing that she would ask for help. When she did, he arrived with an electrician and stole her flat keys.
Sajjad allegedly sneaked into the flat later, when Pallavi was sleeping. He allegedly tried to rape her but she fought back fiercely. He then allegedly killed her with a knife and ran away.
Pallavi’s fiance, Avik Sengupta, who lived with her, found her body lying in blood. He died of an illness on November 14 last year. He was a crucial witness and had testified in the case.
Among those who had waited anxiously for today’s verdict is Pallavi’s friend Chirag Madan, who told NDTV, “Pallavi was a great friend.