Doctor’s murder after ‘friendly entry’ leaves Jangpura Extension shaken | DelhiNews

On usual days, Dr Neena Paul, a gynaecologist at a government hospital, comes home from work around 6.30pm. A resident of upscale Jangpura, she lived on the upper ground floor in a builder flat in the locality with her husband de ella Yogesh Chander Paul, 63, a well-known physician. Their daughter had moved to Noida after marriage three years ago, and the couple had been on their own since. They had a canine company though: six-year-old Molly, a beagle.

But on Friday, when Dr Neena returned from her shift, she sensed something amiss. The main door of the house was ajar.

She raised an alarm, prompting neighbors to gather, and one of them decided to check inside.

What the neighbor saw shook her bones. “It was gory,” she said. “Dr Paul’s body was lying horizontally on the kitchen floor. His hands were tied behind his back. He had been strangled with a leash of his pet. He had been gagged with a cap. His face had been covered by a chaddar (bed cover). She further said, “One of the lenses of his spectacles was found lying outside the kitchen. They had hit him on the face, perhaps,” she added.

The murder of the affable Dr Paul who used to run a clinic a 7-minute walk away from his home in C block, Jangpura Extension, and was popular for reserving half-an-hour everyday to check patients for free, has left the locality shaken.

Festive offer

Said Mehek Sethi, a lawyer who lives a floor above the Pauls: “He would start his work day at 10am and get back home around 1pm.”

After spotting Dr Paul’s body, the neighbors started looking for Molly who was nowhere to be seen. But then, they heard a whimper from a bathroom, which was locked from outside. “The killers had locked her there and left,” said Sethi.

short article insert

Eyewitnesses also said they found “every cupboard and almirah lying open” and belongings scattered on the floor in all four bedrooms.

Locality not new to crime

Most of Dr Paul’s neighbors are professionals – a number of them lawyers, who explain the scores of law offices dotting the neighborhood.

Kapil Kakkar, who heads the RWA (Residents’ Welfare Association), said the locality has witnessed several instances of thefts recently. “Some time ago, a tire of a car was stolen. Last year, side view mirrors of a car were stolen,” he said. “But we had never thought that something this brutal could ever happen in our town.” He said the murder and burglary has caused a lot of panic among residents.

The building that Dr Paul lived in had witnessed a burglary incident in the past. “In 2017, it happened in our flat. We were away and the burglars broke open the door and stole valuables, including furniture. They even removed toilet seats,” Sethi said. “Apparently, they had told people that they were movers and packers so as to avoid attention as they loaded stuff on their vehicle.”

A senior police officer, part of the murder investigation, told The Indian Express that in Dr Paul’s case, “there were three burglars who entered the flat, wearing snapback caps with white scarves around their necks.” Besides, there were two more roaming about the street to keep watch.

“The apartment building doesn’t have any CCTV cameras,” the police officer said.

“However, the CCTV footage from a camera at the house right across clearly shows three men entering the building within two minutes after Dr Paul returned from his clinic at 1.30pm,” the officer added.

‘Clear that they were waiting for him’

“It is clear that they were waiting for him and had done a recce earlier. It is a premeditated crime,” the officer said.

Sethi, the neighbor, said Dr Paul followed a strict schedule. “He used to go for a walk at 8am and leave for his clinic at 9.30am,” she said.

Dr Paul had set up the clinic after a stint at a private hospital 20 years ago. I preferred to walk to his clinic.

“He had two cars but he loved to walk,” said Sethi.

The police said they have found that the entry by the burglars was “friendly.” “The door wasn’t broken,” a police officer said, adding the shoemarks of one of the burglars was found inside the washroom. “CCTV footage shows that they (burglars) left the apartment only at 4 pm, carrying bags,” the officer said. The police are tight-lipped about what has been looted from the apartment.

Police are questioning the Pauls’ part-time house help and the attendant at the clinic of the deceased.

Lawyer Sethi said that Dr Paul was like a family doctor to the entire locality.

“He used to provide free treatment to the underprivileged everyday for half an hour…He was full of life, always smiling,” she recalled.

A family friend, Anil Aggarwal, said the Pauls had accompanied his family to Ayodhya recently.

Talking about security measures in the area, Kakkar, the RWA president, said, “There are eight CCTV cameras installed by the police around Jangpura Extension. Besides, most of the houses have their own cameras.”

The police had earlier taken a few measures to thwart burglaries in the area. “From 11pm to 6am, the area turns into a fortress. The police would lay barricades and shut every entry/exit point. The only road open is from the Defense Colony flyover side,” a resident said. “It seems even the police didn’t expect burglars to strike in broad daylight. There is hardly any police presence during the day,” he added.

DCP (Southeast) Rajesh Deo said the police have some “very strong leads” in the case. “The investigation is at a crucial stage, so at this point in time, we cannot share the details,” he added.

For Latest Updates Follow us on Google News


PREV a gas leak, a fire and a brawl with eleven injured
NEXT NASA seeks to protect jaguars and tigers with the help of satellites