Mumbai Double Murder Case: Truck driver who drove dead bodies becomes witness

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Mumbai, Dec 14: In the sensational double murder case of internationally-acclaimed artist Hema Upadhyay and her advocate Harish Bhambani, the police on Sunday, Dec 13, said that the cause of murder can be a money-related dispute.

According to reports, Gotu, the owner of a Charkop warehouse, where Hema used to store her art work, had a dispute over Rs 5 lakh with her.

File Photo: Mumbai-based artist Hema Upadhyay, who was found dead in a drain in Mumbai's Kandivali suburb late evening on Saturday.

Police investigation revealed that the last location of Hema and her lawyer Harish was traced at towers between Charkop, where the warehouse is located. Their phones also got switched off at around 8.30 pm on Friday, Dec 11 night. [Mumbai Double murder: Well-known artist, lawyer found dead]

Initial probe also hinted that the duo were last seen at Laxmi Industrial Estate, near Hema's studio, at 6.30 pm on Friday. The mobile phones and wallets of the deceased are also missing.

Police has launched a manhunt to nab the culprit. On Sunday, they had detained three people, including suspect's driver and two workers, for questioning.

Truck driver becomes witness

As per a report published in Mid Day, the police managed to find a truck driver, who allegedly drove the suspects along with the packed and wrapped bodies.

However, truck driver had no idea what was inside the cartons. The suspects told him to stop the truck near a drain and told them , they have to dispose some waste material.

When the truck driver read about the news of dead bodies found from a drain, then he immediately contacted the police and told them that he can be the witness in the case.

On Sunday, Dec 13, police also interrrogated Hema's estranged husband Chintan Upadhyay, who had been living in Delhi for past few years.

Both were going through a divorce procedure and the Bombay High Court lawyer Bhambani was representing the case from Hema's side.

Ragpicker noticed dead bodies 

On Saturday, Dec 12, a ragpicker noticed two cartons and he was shocked to see a body part. Then, he alerted the Laljipada police station.

65-year-old Bhambani's torso, hands and legs were recovered from separate boxes. Their bodies were reportedly found in semi-naked conditions.

Bhambani's family had his missing complaint at Matunga police station, when he did not return home on Friday night. Bhambani's daughter told police that her father had gone Andheri to meet a client.

Meanwhile, 42-year-old Hema's servant had filed her missing complaint on Saturday morning at Santa Cruz Police station.

The bodies of Hema and Bhambani were sent to Kalina Forensic Laboratory, to ascertain the cause of their deaths.

Hema's relationship with her husband

After meeting Chintan in 1992, Hema got married with him on Oct 31, 1998, and both moved to Mumbai. Hema, who was from Vadodra, was staying at Mittal Ocean building on Juhu Tara Road in Santacruz (west).

The relationship between Hema and Chintan soured around 2010. Hema had filed a complaint under the Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, against Chintan in 2013, when he created an obscene painting on the wall of her room in Juhu flat.

Since then, both started living separately and a divorce case was going on in a family court.

Hema had recently visited Dubai, where her paintings were exhibited at an art gallery. Born in 1972, Hema got trained in painting from Maharaja Sayajirao University's faculty of Fine Arts.

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