Mumbai: They met, fell head over heels in love with each other, and exchanged rings. But who knew that the love story of Sheena Bora and Rahul Mukerjea will have such a painful end.
In a statement to the police, Rahul recalled how he met Sheena and the duo spent four happy years with each other. Sheena Bora, 24, was allegedly strangulated on the night of April 24, 2012.
Mid-day has accessed Rahul's statement in which the son of former media tycoon Peter Mukerjea told the police that Sheena’s mother and prime accused in the case, Indrani Mukerjea, was not happy about their relationship. He also told the police that Sheena’s disappearance made him depressed.
It was in 2008 when Rahul first met Sheena at his father's home in Marlow apartments in Worli. “I first met Sheena at the Worli flat. We started meeting frequently and developed a close friendship,” Rahul said in his statement.
After spending a month in Mumbai, Rahul went to London. He returned to the city again after a few months. However, this time Indrani asked Peter to tell Rahul to rent another flat and stay there.
“I got a job in Prime Focus (a Lower Parel firm) with my father’s help. I started meeting Sheena frequently and, gradually, we fell in love. One day she came up to me and said, ‘I am Indrani’s daughter, not her sister.’ When Indrani came to know about our relationship, she was furious and fought with my father. She sent Sheena to Guhawati,” Rahul recounted.
Later, Sheena was admitted to a Delhi hospital in 2009. Indrani and Sheena's ex-boyfriend visited her. On Indrani's suggestion, Sheena moved to Bangalore and began staying with her ex-boyfriend.
Rahul, who was short of funds, stated that he sold his household items to go and meet Sheena in Bangalore. “She was very weak. The medicines given to her by Indrani were sedatives meant for mental illness, a doctor in Bangalore told us. The doctor also told her to immediately stop taking those medicines. Her health started improving and I took her to our Dehradun house with the permission of her grandparents and my mother.”
The couple returned to Mumbai in late 2009 where Sheena had found work.
They had rented a flat in Marol, Andheri (East).
Their relationship was the cause of huge quarrels between Indrani and Peter.
Rahul and Sheena went to Dehradun in October 2011 and got engaged. The duo had taken the permission from Rahul’s mother and Sheena’s grandparents. “Sheena was very happy and healthy that time,” Rahul told the CBI.
Upon the couple's return to Mumbai, Indrani invited Sheena for dinner.
After the dinner, Sheena had told me that Indrani had changed a lot,” said Rahul.
A day before Sheena got murdered in April 2012, Indrani had told her daughter that she wanted to give her an engagement gift and invited her to dinner again.
On April 24, 2012, Rahul picked up Sheena from her workplace and took her to their flat where she changed into pants and a red top.
“Indrani was repeatedly calling to ask about Sheena’s whereabouts and how much time she would take. We went to the address given by Indrani — near National College at Bandra (West). Indrani was waiting in a silver Chevrolet car, Shyam Rai was at the wheel, while one unknown person was smoking inside.” Notably, the unknown person was later identified as Sanjeev Khanna.
“Later, I tried calling Sheena, but instead of taking my calls she started sending text messages. I also responded to her on SMS - this was happening between 8 to 11 pm. She told me she was enjoying dinner with Indrani and would spend the night at her place. I went home and constantly tried to call her, but she never took my calls.”
“I kept calling her but she did not respond. I kept messaging her. I got a reply saying she had found someone else. The message advised me to forget her, as she was very happy with her new lover. Another SMS informed me she would get in touch after two to three months. I really got suspicious with such messages.”
Rahul then approached the Worli, Bandra, Khar and MIDC police stations to file a missing person’s complaint, but the police bypassed his request and said Sheena was an adult who had gone with her mother.
Rahul collected Sheena’s belongings, including her laptop, from her office. Despite Indrani's insistence that he should hand over the stuff to her, Rahul did not do so and gave to the investigators once the murder came to the fore.
The sensational Sheena Bora case got murkier as the CBI slapped murder charge on former media tycoon Peter Mukerjea and accused him of playing an "active role" in the killing of his stepdaughter.
It has now emerged that relations among some of the family members, property, inheritance and finance could have played a major role in her killing, for which three - Indrani Mukerjea, her ex-husband Sanjeev Khanna and her former driver Shyamwar Rai - already stand dubbed as prime accused by the CBI.
Sheena Bora, 24, Indrani's daughter from her "live-in partner" Siddhartha Das, was allegedly strangulated in a car on the night of April 24, 2012. Later, her body was taken to the forest near Gagode village in Raigad district, around 80 km south of Mumbai.