A day after Riya Gautam was stabbed a number of times by a man known to her in Shahdara, the 21-year-old succumbed to her injuries in hospital. Doctors performed surgery late on Wednesday night, but a deep wound on her upper abdomen and heavy bleeding due to a slit wrist proved fatal.
CCTV footage from a camera installed outside a shop in Ram Nagar Colony showed Gautam running for cover into the shop. She is repeatedly stabbed by Mohammed Adil, 22, even as pedestrians pass by without pay heed to her cries for help.
Adil fled from the spot and police are in his pursuit. “A team led by a DCP-ranked officer is probing the crime and six teams have been formed to track Adil. He also has four cases of vehicle theft registered against him,” Dependra Pathak, chief spokesperson, Delhi Police.
Cops identify killer as Md Adil who stabbed the woman, Riya Gautam, a dozen times when she refused to marry him. Manhunt launched. Will this #lynching qualify for #NotInMyName campaign?? #JustAsking
Nupur Prasad, DCP (Shahdara), said on Thursday, “We have registered a case of murder on the basis of the complaint filed by the woman’s brother. The circumstances in which the stabbing took place are being investigated.”
Gautam was the youngest of the five children of Girwar Singh, who works in the Delhi Secretariat. On Wednesday evening, she returned home from classes at the air-hostess training academy and stepped out to buy Maggi for snacks when she was waylaid by Adil. Call details show that Adil had phoned her just before the incident, asking her to meet him.
The two met for 15-20 minutes, but their conversation turned into an argument. When she started walking homeward, Adil pulled out a knife and attacked her. In the footage, Gautam is seen trying to run from him as he repeatedly swings the knife at her. He stabs her twice before she collapses inside the shop. Two women walk past the shop without reacting even when the injured girl calls out to them.
The shop-owner told TOI he had gone to attend a religious programme and was not present at the time of the incident. But Ankur, who lives in the neighbourhood, said, “We heard the girl run into the shop screaming for help. Inside, we found her sitting on the floor bleeding from her hand and neck. Her attacker told us that she had snatched his mobile phone, and then shoved us and fled the scene.”
Ankur and others informed Ashish, Gautam’s brother, who was present nearby at a tea stall. They rushed the bleeding girl to Guru Tegh Bahadur Hospital on an e-rickshaw and informed the cops on the way.
The investigators could not find the woman’s mobile phone at crime scene. It was later found to be switched off.
With the inputs from TOI